8/28/07 | Mushrooms
[ Currently Eating: Potato Chips ]
Time, time, TIME. There’s little of that today, so here is another cop-out post on vegetables in order to save time. These are actually Crimini (or Cremini, or Baby Portobello, or Portabellini) mushrooms I sliced up and cooked for a bit. Great for toppings on hamburgers and other Cheap Eats.
One of the most distinct memories I have of as a child is going to a mushroom farm. I remember jumping out of The Beast (a pre 1970s Ford Ranger truck, that only got sold last year) and into piles of fertilizer and soil and mushrooms that were just all over the ground. It was pretty insane. If I remember correctly they just scooped you some by the shovelful, dirt and all. I can’t remember exactly, but I think it was very cheap compared to the supermarket.
Anyhow, fast forward to today and you most often see mushrooms packed in those little styrofoam boxes. White button mushrooms are the most common, though portobellos are popular and sold separately. Farmers markets have them too. The thing is – mushrooms are pretty darn expensive, and they have a comparatively short shelf-life. I’m not even going to get into some of the more expensive types of fungi. So you need to look out for sales (Trader Joe’s has them usually for $1.50 to $1.80 which is surprising, but keep in mind they’re unwashed). Or find a mushroom farm – I don’t even know how they run those now or if they let people just walk in and buy some in bulk.
The thing about mushrooms is that they go well with so many breakfast, lunch and dinner recipes that I’m inclined to cut them just a little slack for being such expensive buggers. You just have to remember to use them up in a timely manner. Mushrooms in gravy, omelettes and spaghetti are a favorite for us. Stuffed mushrooms are a lot of work if you use the little ones, but pretty amazing as appetizers. I usually try to plan to use them in at least 2 or 3 meals straight so they don’t have a chance to go bad.
Price: $1.59 for box
Found At: Trader Joe’s
Cheap Eats Score: 6/10