Nick and I went to the Farmer’s Market this weekend- as you may already know, these markets are more sparse come the cold weather. Upon driving in, the market definitely looked empty, however, there were still a few dedicated Farmers that were braving the cold.
Usually, I am on sensory overload when I go the Farmer’s Market… there are SO many cool stands, produce, products, and different items. I feel like there is never enough time in one visit… I just love everything about it and could spend all.day.long. there.
I say all this because my recent experience was quite different….very calm, yet still enjoyable despite the smaller stands and crowds. I was actually able to walk around freely (usually it is a hustle and bustle) and really talk to the Farmer’s and sellers.
One stand stuck out, which I am not sure if it would’ve amidst the business of the summer stand.
It was a shiitake mushroom stand. I went up and asked the seller about his Farm (side creek farms) and ending up learning all about the growth experience of a mushroom on a farm….it was truly FASCINATING. I also received some great information on the benefits of mushrooms- all of it was just incredible! Here are a few pics (reflecting the process of mushroom farming) similar to the ones I saw at the market.
Here are a few facts I learned about shiitake mushrooms:
1. Have 4-10 times the flavor of the common white button mushroom.
2. Taste gives a gourmet flavor to any dish.
3. Provide high levels of protein (18%), potassium, niacin, B vitamins, calcium, magnesium, and phosphorus.
4. Natural anti-viral and immunity-boosting properties.
5. Lentinan, an immune stimulant derived from shiitake has been used to treat cancer, AIDS, diabetes, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibryocystic breast disease, and other conditions with impressive results.
After learning all about these mushrooms…I couldn’t help but start thinking of great recipes 🙂
The lemon and sage in this dish combine to create a great fresh and light flavor. Very different from your typical heavy white fettuccine sauce.
The mushrooms add depth (and tons of nutrients!!) with their “meaty” flavor.
I even threw in some browned tofu- which was delicious!
Ingredients (serving size-3-4):
1 cup sliced shiitake mushrooms
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 box of fettuccini
1/2 cup pasta water or chicken/veggie broth (reserved after cooked)
juice from 1 lemon
2 tbsp butter or olive oil
4-5 sage leaves (more or less to taste)
salt and pepper to taste
1. Saute the garlic for about 1 minute (before they begin to brown) in a large saute pan with the butter/olive oil (you will be adding the pasta later- so it does need to be a large pan). Meanwhile, slice the mushrooms.
2. Add the shiitake mushrooms to the saute pan. Let brown (4-5 min).
3. Add the sage and lemon juice (1 min).
4. Add the pasta and cook for another 2-3 min.
5. Serve up the pasta in bowls and top with fresh sage and/or fresh parmesan cheese.
cheers and happy evolving!