Yesterday turned out to be a beautiful sunny day. It started grayish and rainy but around 10 am the sky became clearer and bluer. That made me happy and at the same time nervous, realizing all of a sudden that summer is coming to an…. end. I had a little panic attack. Then I started thinking… soon there will be no fresh corn and no more pluots! Oy vey.
My favorite pluot variety – I think it is called Dinosaurs? At least, maybe, that’s what the lady at the market said – is already out of season. It has crimson skin and flesh and a heavenly perfumey smell and a divine floral flavor. I knew this was coming and so I warned the whoooole world in advance. No, I did not stand in downtown Seattle with a message written on a cardboard. I did it on Twitter, so don’t say that I did not warn you!
Back to the lady at the market… She had 5 other varieties of pluots but no “dinosaurs” and she agreed with me that they ARE “The Kings” of plouts and confirmed that they are indeed gone until next year. How sad. Just ttt… tragic. Ok, maybe a little.
Now, I know that to someone who is not that much into pluots, or into food in general (like most of the people I know), this might(?) sound pathetic or at least very melodramatic. They might think I’m a crazy woman with a distorted list of priorities. BUT this only means they have no idea what I’m talking about ‘cos they never had a good pluot their entire lives. To that I would answer: “Ah-ha-ha! Now, THAT is just crazy and sad!”
So, we went corn hunting and pluot hunting. And where’s the best place to do that? Of course, the farmers market. Ahhhh, the farmers market on a sunny day. T’was a beautiful day at the market… I only wish my camera’s battery did not die after the 5th photo…
But I did find a new stand for wild foraged mushrooms and huckleberries.
Fresh foraged wild mushrooms. Not something you see every day, right?! This meant only one thing. Must make wild mushroom soup.
But first some Miscellaneous:
2. Check out the new giveaway of some serious food goodies, click here.
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Foraged wild mushrooms soup
Adapted from Jamie’s Dinners cookbook
a handful of dried porcini mushrooms
1 lb. (450 grams) mixed fresh wild mushrooms (like chanterelles, shitake, oyster, lobster…), cleaned & sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely sliced
1 cup red/yellow onion, finely chopped
2 tablespoons butter
a few thyme sprigs, leaves picked
black pepper, ground
1 qt. (1 liter) chicken stock*
a handful of parsley leaves, roughly chopped
1/4 cup heavy cream/mascarpone/crème fresh/sour cream
1/2 big lemon, zested and juiced
truffle oil, optional
Place the porcini in a small bowl and add boiling water just to cover, leave to soak.
Meanwhile, get a large pot nice and hot, then add a good couple of lugs of olive oil and the fresh mushrooms. Stir for a minute, then add garlic, onion, butter and thyme and a little salt and pepper.
After about a minute you’ll notice moisture cooking out of the mushrooms, at this point take the porcini out of their liquid with a fork, chop them and add to the pot. Strain the soaking liquid 9use a sieve lined with paper towel) to remove any grit, and add it to the pan. Continue cooking for about 20 minutes until most of the moisture disappears.
Season with more salt and pepper, and add the stock. Bring to the boil and simmer for about 20 minutes.
Puree the soup to the desired consistency using food processor/blender/hand blender. (I like to leave it a bit chunky and not completely smooth). Add the parsley and heavy cream/mascarpone, stir and season to taste.
To finish the soup, add the lemon zest and juice. Serve with a few drops of truffle oil and/or a dollop of sour cream just before serving.
* Chicken stock: if you don’t make your own (which I believe most of you don’t. I know I haven’t made one in 3 years… Too busy being a mom), I recommend buying a fresh frozen one. Check the freezer at your grocery store. It taste a lot better than any canned or carton of stock/broth.
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One last thing, I wanted to show you the photo of the same soup that I took last year on 12/2008 with a point-and-shoot camera, at night, and with much less experience with food photography. Isn’t it funny?