Girls Just Wanna have Funghi

Girls Just Wanna have Funghi

The post title refers of course to the famous Cyndi Lauper song “Girls Just Wanna Have Funghi,” but it later changed to “Fun,” which may be the version you are more familiar with. And do you remember this one… It ne-e-ver rains in California/But girl, don’t they warn ya/It pours/Man, it […]

The post title refers of course to the famous Cyndi Lauper song “Girls Just Wanna Have Funghi,” but it later changed to “Fun,” which may be the version you are more familiar with.

And do you remember this one… It ne-e-ver rains in California/But girl, don’t they warn ya/It pours/Man, it pours…

It’s kind of an oldie. So am I. Totally beside the point, but here’s the tie-in: When it rains in California–as it did last week and thank goodness ’cause we really need it–it means mushrooms.

Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California

Santa Barbara County is located at the intersection of two bio-regions and that makes it a great place to learn about nature, so if you want to go mushroom hunting well by golly you can jolly well find someone to take you.

I didn’t, but I found them anyway.

Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California

I am fascinated by mushrooms. They’re like the seashells of the forest – so beautiful and so many shapes, colors and textures. And so delicious. Like meat, but not. A yummy recipe at the end, btw, if you’re hungry.

The other day after lunch at the terrific Bell Street Farm Eatery & Market not far from us in the cool little Western town of Los Alamos, California

The Bell Street Farm Eatery & Market has been a great addition to the Valley.

His Grace (my husband for new readers) and I strolled down the street and poked into the Bedford Winery tasting room. I’d caught a glimpse of a display of mushrooms in the window and was intrigued.

Bedford Winery Tasting Room
Bedford Winery Tasting Room
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California

The study of mushrooms is called mycology. Not to be confused with yourcology.

Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California

And there was Stephen Bedford himself welcoming all and sundry. Tragically we had missed the Mushroom Festival (Jan 26), but we’ll mark it down for next year.

Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California

Aren’t they beautiful? Maybe I was married to a mushroom in a former life.

Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California
Mushrooms at Bedford Winery Tasting Room, Los Alamos, California

Now if you are all whipped up into a funghi frenzy, here’s a recipe. I tried a Potato and Mushroom Gratin from Epicurious which included dried porcini mushrooms, which to me are one of the most distinctive savory ingredients on the planet. I even managed to put it over on HG, who loved it, despite the fact that it is vegetarian, which I did not tell him. Sometimes a don’t ask-don’t tell policy is wise in these matters.

Potato and Mushroom Gratin, via Epicurious, photo by Noel
Potato and Mushroom Gratin, via Epicurious, photo by Noel

 

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