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Sunday, February 12, 2012

We've Moved!

We have decided to change our blog host. We can now be found at

www.windyfieldsmushrooms.wordpress.com

See you at the new site!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

It's a New Year!

Welcome back, everyone! As I write this, the snow is accumulating outside on one of the most wintry days we have had this season. I spent an hour working inside the greenhouse, pulling some old plants, and visualizing this year's crops. When I came outside, my tracks to the house had completely filled in with snow.

I love this time of the year, because it is when I spend alot of time poring over the seed catalogues, reviewing last year's hits and misses in the gardens, and trying to decide what new things I would like to try this year. I already have a list of "new" things, and will be sharing those in a future article.

I have been keeping busy most Saturdays at the Elora Farmer's Market, which is held at the Grand River Raceway, from 9 - 1 pm, every Saturday, until mid-March. On February 4, our mushrooms and I will be the feature at the market. In preparation for that, I have been trying out new recipes, so that I can hand out samples, and recipe cards, to our shoppers.

One recipe that I just tried today is a definite "keeper". When I mentioned it on Facebook, there was alot of interest, so I thought I'd share it right away. For those of you who aren't familiar with quinoa, it is a protein powerhouse, that I learned about from my ultra trail-running sister. It provides the heartiness to this delicious soup. Here goes:

"Mystic Mushroom and Quinoa Chowder"

1/2 cup quinoa
2 tbsp. butter
1 medium onion, diced
1/2 lb. oyster mushrooms, chopped
2 tbsp. maple syrup
3 cups chicken (or vegetable) stock
1 cup heavy cream (I used milk)
Salt and pepper to taste

* Optional: 2-3 shiitake caps, slivered and sauteed in 1 tbsp. butter
chopped fresh chives

1. Toast quinoa in a dry, heavy skillet over medium heat, until fragrant.

2. In a large saucepan, or stockpot, melt 2 tbsp.butter over med.high heat. Stir in onions and cook until caramelized, about 6 - 8 minutes. Stir in quinoa, mushrooms, and maple syrup. Cook for 3-4 minutes. Add chicken (or vegetable) stock, and bring to a boil, reduce heat to low, and let simmer for 18-20 minutes, or until quinoa is cooked.

3. Meanwhile, melt 1 tbsp. butter in a skillet over med.high heat. Cook shiitakes until softened, set aside.

4. Puree soup in a food processor or using hand-blender, and return to saucepan. Stir in cream (or milk) - do NOT boil. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Garnish with shiitake mushrooms, and chives, if desired.

Bon Appetit!