Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Homegrown Shiitake Steaks with Tempeh

Late last year, I made a contribution to a local cause and received a shiitake mushroom log as a "thank you". I was told that I could actively manage the log by periodically drenching it, and then would get a number of mushrooms mushrooming at a time. Or I could just let the log be, laying in a shady area in my back woods, and would occasionally get a mushroom or two. I chose the latter - it also would last longer this way and I think give a larger total number of mushrooms.

I was delighted a few days ago to find two very large mushrooms growing on the log! Today I went to get them but one was gone - I don't think that squirrels or other animals eat them, but may be wrong. There was no trace of one.

But the one that I harvested was huge and heavy! I made a simple dish out of it, cooking it in a little bit of oil, shallot (or was it onion?), and herbs. I served it with some dried garlic and salt. Delicious!


At Mon May 19, 11:14:00 AM EDT, Blogger Erin said...

I've never heard of a mushroom log, but that seems so cool to go in the yard one day and find a mushroom you can eat.

At Mon May 19, 11:32:00 AM EDT, Blogger Dilip said...

Thanks for your comment, erin. You can get logs that have been drilled and plugs of mushroom spawn inserted, with a wax-like coating to keep other fungi out. Let the log rest in a shady area, maybe watering it very occasionally if there is a period of dry weather, and six months to a year later shiitakes start emerging from cracks in the wood. There are companies like Fungi Perfecti that sell these logs.

BTW, apologies to you and other readers for having fallen behind. I hope to get updated soon. I just returned from a weekend in Ohio photographing a wedding - and the two weekends before I was in California.


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