Roasted pheasant stuffed with wild rice served with pomegranate and persimmon sauce makes a flavorful winter dish.
How many boomers cut their culinary gourmet teeth on tuna noodle casserole? OK, hands down. I grew up making it and loving it too. The Beaver and Wally must have enjoyed it, and I’m sure Samantha Stephens twitched one up occasionally for Tabitha when Darrin wasn’t looking. But how would Samantha serve it to Endora, whose tastes were anything but ordinary? Endora would probably turn up her nose at Samantha’s can of this and can of that, wave her arm, and out of rising smoke would appear something like “La Cocotte Nouilles au Thon avec la Sauce de Mornay, Sherried Champignons Forestiers et l’Huile de Truffe Blanc.” Whew!
Wild mushrooms permeate the forests of the Pacific Northwest like spring bluebonnets cover fields in Texas. Most supermarkets offer ample selections of the ones that are easily cultivated, such as shiitake, oyster and portobello, to name a few. Also available are those that must be foraged: morels, matsutake, maitake, and porcini and the black trumpet.
Drawing on two great Oregon resources, here is a crab and wild mushroom extravaganza with five, that’s right, I said FIVE varieties of wild mushrooms.
Well, la-di-da! It’s a finger-lickin’, chin-dribblin’, rib-stickin’, lip-smackin’ Mac ‘n’ Cheese! The Allison Inn and Spa leads the way with another “ultimate.” Truffle Macaroni and Cheese!
Smoked Alaskan Sockeye salmon, shrimp and leeks make a wonderful stuffing for an easy recipe for ravioli using won-ton wrappers. Top it off with steamed mussels and a sauce of white whine, cream, fish stock and peas for a wonderfully tasty dish.
How generic can you get with a recipe? How about “Pasta with House Sauce”? In truth, how often, especially when time is an issue, do we turn to pasta to help us put a meal on our table? It can be the “go-to” for stretching quantities when unexpected diners are coming. It can help turn boring leftovers into something new and fresh, as well as serving as a dependable base for knockout sauces. And…….it’s nutritious, satisfying and inexpensive.
Of all the abundant natural resources we enjoy in the Pacific Northwest, wild mushrooms occupy a lofty status due to their rarity. Even if you don’t live in an area where you can forage for wild fungi, locating dried shouldn’t be that difficult. Gourmet stores and many supermarkets stock dried mushrooms. If your community still doesn’t offer a source, consider the Internet. Oregon Mushrooms, a provider of local mushrooms and truffles, offers mail order service from Keno. Unfortunately, the farther you are from the source, the deeper you have to dig into your pocketbook.