Magical Mystery Mushroom Tour

I don’t know if there is any point in mentioning this. I’m sure someone out there, a hater so to speak, will roll their eyes. I know this, because I can be a hater myself. Roll away hater, because I invoke thee honey badger and I don’t care.

How I feel about haters hating.

I love mushrooms guys. I love food. I have so much love for all kinds of food. Mushrooms, jalapeños, prosciutto, goat cheese, gouda, pepperjack, cheese in general, arugula, salami, ham, eggs, chorizo, sausage, garlic, onions, scallions, and much, much more.

I dated a guy who hated mushrooms and when I told him how much I loved them, he said shrooms are only good for tripping.

My response was, “Imagine how much better your trip would be if you actually liked them!”

He didn’t get it, I should have known then it wouldn’t have lasted.

That being said, my next recipe is Pan-Fried Porcini Mushrooms aka Funghi Porcini allo Spiedo o in Padella from The Italian Mama’s Kitchen.

It’s another simple recipe and I can attest that my half Italian mother sautés mushrooms in a similar way. Not that there’s a whole lot to it. Most people sauté mushrooms with oil and garlic. It’s the same with Italians, we just also throw in some parsley. Maybe I’m making myself look like a dumb dumb and everyone does that. All I can say is that I grew up learning a lot about Italian spices, so make fun of me all you want. Only if that’s your true desire though. The key words are true desire, be clear on your manifestations of hate.

The only thing I have to add before we go down our cooking trip, however, is that I was unable to find porcini mushrooms so I substituted with Portobello. Portobello and shiitake mushrooms are my favorite shrooms by the way.

So, what you’ll need are, 4 tablespoons of olive oil, a small handful of Italian parsley, salt, 1 finely chopped medium garlic clove, pepper, and 2 fresh medium-sized porcini mushrooms. If you use Portobello, you might have to double the ingredients. Use your common sense to determine, of course.

The first step is to whisk, in a bowl, 2 tablespoons of oil, the parsley, salt, garlic, and pepper. I recommend using a wide shallow bowl because you will be soaking the mushrooms in this mix.

Once that’s done, remove the stems from your mushrooms and spread your oil mixture on them. The cookbook also mentions that you can reserve the stalks for sauce if you desire.

After that, you are ready to cook your mushrooms in a pan. To do so, place the remaining two tablespoons of oil in your pan, as well as the oil mixture, and sauté under medium heat for about two minutes.

When all is said and done, you will have a delicious side dish of mushrooms that is juicy and flavorful. I recommend pairing it with steak. My mother used to sauté mushrooms whenever my father would grill steaks for the family. It was always my favorite way to eat a steak.

I was unable to do that when I made this, though, and ended up making chicken instead. It was still good, but steak and mushrooms is my first choice.

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Don’t trip or do, but here’s the shrooms

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I know it looks like slices of egg chunk, but that is chicken.

My Never Ending Philosophical Question

I want to get back to writing about my recipes, but I’m working again and haven’t had the chance to cook lately. Working is good, because as you might have read in my last post, I need to keep busy. Unfortunately, my current temp work is, for the most part, just answering the phones. This means I get bored often, which always leads to rumination.

This office is so relaxed, though, and that’s a relief. They don’t really care what I do as long as I’m around to answer the phones. The former receptionist told me she would watch Netflix sometimes when she was bored. I almost feel like I could whip out my PSP provided I stashed it away whenever a client comes in. As much as I love games, though, I still worry that would shed some major light on how truly immature and un-professional I am.

I’m also a bit shy about writing on here when I’m working, not because I think it’s an unacceptable thing to do, but because my computer is fairly visible to people walking by. I don’t mind strangers reading this blog. Writing in anonymity, especially when you’re not a great writer is all fine by me. Having people I know in real life read my crap, is too scary and vulnerable.

It doesn’t matter how old I get, there is still a part of me that gets worried about being made fun of. That’s why I regret letting people in my real life know about this blog. I’ve told some friends, I don’t think most of them read it, so that’s ok. I wouldn’t want anyone here to read it though. I think it’s kind of silly, because in the end you’ve got to be yourself, right? Then again, what if being yourself isn’t a good thing? Then what? You change naturally. What if you’re not the one with the problem and it’s actually everyone else though? How do you determine which is which? These are some of the philosophical discussions I have with myself that I’ve yet to master.

I don’t recommend doing it to yourself either. It leads to feelings of self-doubt and a never ending rabbit hole of wondering if you need to change or continue to be yourself. People want to knock delusion, but delusional people do seem to be the most confident and happy. Ignorance truly is bliss.

An Ode to Rumination

Practically every time I talk to my mother, she likes to mention some class or activity she thinks I should do. Riding horses was on a primetime run for about a year. The other day she mentioned some kind of renaissance group she thought I should join and writing is one that she still harps on me about.

You can thank her for this terrible blog. It’s kind of her fault.

My favorite one and I’m only being a quarter facetious, was taking a philosophy class. I remember when she said it to me, because I was like, “What do you expect me to do with a philosophy class Mom? That’s just going to take up time and money. No one is going to be impressed that I took a philosophy class for fun when I’ve already graduated college.”

I realized that she was throwing all these activities at me, because she worries about me. At the time she mentioned the philosophy class, I was super unemployed and depressed. I felt stuck in all areas of my life. My boyfriend had dumped me, my attempts at getting non-serving jobs were failing, and I still wasn’t booking the kind of acting jobs I wanted.

She knows I’m the type of person who needs to keep busy, because if I’m not, I ruminate all day long. This might be a fun activity for some people, but I’ll ruminate about the things I’m not happy about. I’ll ruminate about why my boyfriend dumped me, how ridiculous it is to get a job in this city, and why is rent so god damn high.

Her reasoning for me taking a philosophy class was that I naturally love to ruminate, so I might as well join a group where I could ruminate with other people who love to ruminate. It made me laugh because it sounded like an AA group for neurotic people who think too much.

My mother knows this because her side of the family is full of people who think too much. My mother quotes one of our relatives as saying “I’ve been cursed with the affliction of an overactive mind.”

I believe it was my great-grandfather that said this, but I don’t want to mis-quote. My mother throws out a lot of metaphors and anecdotes, so I get them mixed up sometimes. You can also thank her for my bad puns and such.

Anyway, I’ve been hearing I think too much all my life and it’s exhausting. It’s exhausting to hear and experience.

I read an article recently that people like me generally tend to be creative geniuses. Well I definitely do not feel like that is true for me. As a child I thought I could become one though. My mother offered to take me to piano lessons as a child. I was always tinkering with my grandmother’s piano. I refused my mother’s helping hand, because I wanted to know how the first person who ever played a piano did it. No joke. I thought that was the path to genius.

Clearly it wasn’t.

I suppose if my overactive mind had led to genius, I’d be ok with it. Instead I often find myself trying to figure out what the hell is up with people. It’s like I’m in a constant game of chess and I can think ahead to my moves, their moves, the counter moves for both of us, but I can’t decide on what step to actually take. My mind thinks like this, “Well what if they were just trying to be nice and if I say this, we’ll they think I’m being pushy? How do I convey what I really think and want without coming across the wrong way? What if this happens and that?”

Over and over and over. I’m tired of calculating everything. It may lead to an implosion and/or an explosion, but I gotta get all these thoughts out.

I’m tired of philosophizing. I just want to be.

Hummus, A Healthy Snack Made Even Healthier; Part II includes more Lemons!

This is part II to Light & Healthy’s hummus recipe. You can refer to Hummus Part I by clicking the link.

There aren’t any major differences compared to the first recipe. Like the first time around, I was unable to find tahini and had to use tahini sauce from Trader Joe’s. The sauce has lemon in it as well, so all I ended up doing for the lemon hummus was add the juice of a whole lemon. Then I added a 1/4 of a cup of parsley and mixed it with the hummus.

There’s not much else to say about the recipe. It is definitely full of lemon and you can garnish with lemon zest to make it even more lemonful. I chose not to and that was fine with me.

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Tumato Salad or The Salad that Stole My Heart

This salad. Oh my god this salad! I know it’s a basic thing for white girls to love salad, but I’ll have you know that I’ve always been desperately in love with chicken parmesan, pizza, burritos, and chips and salsa. It’s a toxic unhealthy orgy.

I think this Tomato and Tuna Salad from Classic Pasta at Home is the one for me though. It’s not overbearing, it’s filling, and it’s lean. I will miss my toxic orgy, but this salad will make up for it with devotion.

I’m not fooling anyone am I? I’m going to end up cheating on this salad the second pizza winks at me. The goddamn bastard knows he has me in his clutches!

Ok, so my bad humor aside, this salad truly is one of the best tuna salads I’ve had. Before I tackled this recipe, I’ve tried my hand at creating my own tuna salad recipe. It’s always good, but a meh good. It doesn’t really knock your socks and boots off. I think the key thing it was missing that I learned from this recipe is the white wine vinegar and basil. Those were the two major ingredients I was missing in my own concoction anyway.

What you’ll need to make this is, 2 large seeded and chopped tomatoes, 1/2 lb of tuna (I used Genova Yellowfin Tuna and I highly recommend it), 1/4 cup of olive oil, 1/4 cup of minced red onion, 2 teaspoons of capers, 2 cloves of minced garlic, salt, white wine vinegar to taste, around 12 basil leaves torn into small pieces, 1 heart butter lettuce, 2 hard boiled eggs quartered, and 12 black  Mediterranean olives.

To assemble the salad you will combine the tomatoes, tuna, oil, onion, capers, and garlic in a large bowl. I do not like capers and therefore omitted them, just so you know. Toss this mix and season with salt and vinegar. Toss again. Salads really like to be tossed apparently.

Once the salad is satisfied with your tossing, you will add the basil.

The final step is to divide your lettuce into 4 servings. In other words get 4 salad plates and make sure each has an equal amount of lettuce. Once that step is done, do the same with the tuna mixture as well as the olives and egg.

As you can see by my photo below, I just halved the eggs. I didn’t see the point in quartering them since I just made this salad for myself. I also bought California black olives, because I just wrote black olives on my grocery list.

Do you guys think I’ll ever get this lesson about details? I sure hope so.

I do prefer Mediterranean olives to black olives and I do think this salad would have been even better if it weren’t for my mistake. In the end, it wasn’t much of a deterrent to my enjoyment of this salad though. I look forward to making it again and this is a recipe I’ve bookmarked for the future.

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Run away salad! I’ll just hurt you!