Monday, August 25, 2014

Porcini Pickles

Some foraged mushrooms came my way this past weekend.  After mushroom risotto and reserving some for requested mushroom ravioli, I found a recipe for preserving them.  Besides drying, here is a batch of mushroom pickles.

Boletus edulis can be called by several names, such as: King Bolete, Porcini, Cepe, King Boleta, Penny Bun, and simply Boleta mushroom.

This mushroom can be found from 7,000 ft. to treeline.  The season runs from June to August.

The best place to look for them is near conifers, such as Spruce.  Boletes subsist by a symbiotic relationship with tree roots.

As you can see in the pictures, they can vary in size.

These mushrooms are a good source of protein, selenium, niacin and potassium. It is great to preserve all of that, as the season is quite short. On to making pickles....

Cut the mushrooms into slices.  Not all the slices are going to be as iconic as the ones below.  That is ok, they taste the same.    


Along with the mushrooms you will need:

White vinegar (I used rice wine vinegar, I think straight up white vinegar is too harsh), white wine, thyme, peppercorns, garlic, rosemary, sage, sea salt, sugar, and olive oil.  The instructions I followed didn't list measured amounts.  I guess it depends on how productive a forage it was for how much you pickle.  There is a video below from Youtube that will explain how to make the pickles.  Some things not mentioned in the video: 1. The mushrooms shrink in size quite a bit, so when you are figuring out which jar to use take that into consideration. 2. Since there aren't measurements involved in the recipe, I would recommend tasting your brind before adding the mushrooms to see if it is balanced.

I would imagine the oil is pretty tasty after all those ingredients meld together.



Sunday, August 24, 2014

Lemon and Basil Cake - Thank You James Martin

Got basil? Well, try this!

My favourite Saturday Kitchen star:

We have plenty of basil coming out of the garden.  Several different types.  For this recipe it was best to use Genovese/Sweet basil.

I may try to adapt this recipe to muffin form.


Sunday, August 3, 2014

Is This The Pits? Something Like Noyaux Liqueur!

I made something similar to Noyaux liqueur.  Noyaux liqueur is made with apricot and cherry pits soaked in brandy.  It is supposed to taste like almonds. For my liqueur I used roasted cherry pits soaked in mead.

I simply pitted a big batch of Colorado cherries that were in season and roasted the pits for 10 minutes, or so, at 400 deg. f.  Cooled, put them in a jar and fill it up with mead.  Almost immediately it started changing to a lovely cherry colour.  I let mine sit overnight.  Drain the pits away and retain the liquid.  Use this to add to cocktails, or wait and I will post some recipe ideas.  I also made a batch of cherry pit syrup with simple syrup and follow the same instructions.

I used my trusty cherry pitter.

I put mine in the refrigerator for safe keeping.

I also soaked some cherry halves in the mead.  You didn't think I would just use only the pits, did you?


Pinterest- I did That!

Use Dr. Bronner's castille  soap and dilute it.  I didn't measure, I just did it.  A couple of squirts and fill the rest of the bottle with water.  Notice I diluted the spelling of Dr. Bronner, as well, not on purpose.

 Spray this on plants to keep the bugs away.

Weed away- 1/4 c. salt, 2 tsp. dish soap and 1 qt. vinegar.

Magnesium for the plants- Epsom salt, buy the kind with no added salt (Epsom salt isn't really salt) and without fragrances, or baking soda added.  If you want to water the plants with the liquid form, the formula is: 2 tbsp. Epsom Salt to a gallon of water.  I like to sprinkle it right on the soil, sort of willy nilly then water. Do this approx.once a month.