POTLUCK: My Dishes Were Hits! (I felt like a star! thank you thank you)

POST #886
So, I went to the potluck last night. As I last reported, I had planned to take mushrooms there.

After I made the mushrooms, I began worrying that there might be some finicky folks there who didn’t want to eat mushrooms, so I put them in the refrigerator, and made up a simple seaweed salad, using a Japanese seaweed mix, carrot shavings, chopped onions, sesame oil, a dash or two of Tabasco, and some apple cider vinegar. That made, I put it in the refrigerator to marinate some. At that point, I became overcome with the idea that nothing but nothing would do but to take the cashew/kale cheese, so I set a cup of cashews to soak and dashed off to the market to pick up a bunch of kale. Yesterday morning, I got up at 5am, and, even before my morning ablutions, I made up the cashew/kale cheese. Then, I decided to take everything to the potluck.

Good thing I did take everything, because it was all a hit. There I was feeling proud as a peacock (as close to a star as I have ever felt)  as people came up to me and asked about how I had made things. (It could have just been that mine was the only real *food* there – most people just brought fruit and dropped it on the table. True, one  young man brought an interesting apple sauce, a Russian guy did make a fabulous apple tart, and his Russian girlfriend made a grim “zucchini pasta dish” that tasted like “earnest health food made by beginner vegetarians”: Please note: Even 30 years ago, before all these designer raw food dishes you find in raw restaurants and recipe books, my dishes were flavorful. Oh! And the woman who’d said that she would bring a kale salad, which was the reason I had not made my famously fabulous marinated kale, picked up a box of chopped kale salad at Whole Foods)

I came away worrying a lot about the raw future of these people, if they don’t even know how to make nice delicious *food* food that will appeal to even non-raw people. (Raw food does not have to taste like you are on a special diet, and it doesn’t even have to taste like a salad!)



POST #870
Woo hoo!! My room-mate kept bringing home this mushroom dish that I could see and taste was raw. I saw the price on the pot and decided that I could make a “reliable” (as in, I know exactly what is in there– duh! I read the ingredients!) version. Last night, I took some of the “baby ‘bellas’” I had in the refrigerator, and sliced them up thinly, put them in a bowl, sprinkled them VERY lightly with salt (ha! You’re seeing that I actually can use salt when forced to!), and added some sesame oil and sesame seeds.
I tried the mushrooms last night, right after I’d made them, and believed they tasted good. I put them in the refrigerator. Believing that my Japanese room-mate has a different “taste”, I fed the mushrooms to her tonight, and she said that they taste much better than the store-bought ones. I was happy.

Okay, I’ll share with you exactly what I did (the measurements are approximate)

  • 6 large baby bella mushrooms
  • 2 T sesame oil
  • 1 t sesame seeds (or more, to taste)
  • 1/8 C carrot (sliced paper thin)
  • Sprinkle of sea salt
  • Remove the stems of the mushrooms (save them for something else – chopped into salad, blended into soup, or shredded for another mushroom recipe)
  • Slice the mushrooms thinly- @1/8” (I used the wider width on my adjustable mandolin, but when I came too close to the ends, I sliced the mushroom ends by hand with a very sharp knife)
  • Place sliced mushrooms in a large bowl.
  • Lightly sprinkle on sea salt, and toss, to mix.
  • Add sesame oil and sesame seeds and toss to thoroughly mix (you can see when the mushrooms are coated with the oil.
  • Wait.

I did not make my experiment with the carrot, but they were in the Korean version I was copying – they will likely add a sweet note to the dish)

I tasted these about 30 mins after I made them and they were good.
After they had been in the refrigerator for 1 day, I gave them to the room-mate. She said they were better than the “Korean-style” ones from the Japanese market. (That is all I needed to hear)