Two days before Thanksgiving, I needed cream and yogurt. My path through The Cupboard Natural Grocery in Denton, Texas took me from the dairy case, with selections in hand, over to the produce section to see if there might be some golden beets and fennel bulbs to go in the roasted, mixed vegetables I planned to serve with the turkey. The disappointment of finding neither soon dissolved into pure delight when I saw a new product among the seasonal greens and fresh turmeric roots. Tubs of hard-to-find fresh mushrooms from Tree Folk reached out to sing to me; a sensual siren’s song of fungus. As my guest list for Thanksgiving had continued to grow, I was forced to remove mushrooms from the menu; so, now, they were back on. A big, beautiful tub of oyster mushrooms went home with me, along with the cream and yogurt.
As guests started arriving and there were still several tasks left to do, mushrooms, once again, were pulled from the menu. There was plenty to eat and lots of visiting with family, friends and neighbors. I never mentioned the exotic mushrooms they were missing out on. Those oyster mushrooms were my selfish little secret that would be enjoyed the next day.
Now, anyone who has ever prepared a large Thanksgiving feast knows there is no desire to cook the next day. With plenty of delicious leftovers, all that was required was a warm oven and a casserole dish full of turkey, mashed potatoes and dressing. Turkey and dressing sandwiches on leftover rolls kept time in the kitchen even more brief and simple.
Those lovely mushrooms sat in the refrigerator until Saturday evening. Fearing I might have to toss them, I was relieved to find them just as fresh and beautiful as the day I bought them. There was still plenty of fresh flat-leaf parsley in the ‘frig’ and a couple of shallots. My desire was to keep this dish simple so the flavor of the mushrooms could shine through.
To sauce, or not to sauce; that was the question. Lemon; or not? In the end, after a little time sautéed in olive oil, a sprinkling of Alaea Hawaiian Red Sea Salt helped reduce the oysters, parsley and shallots and bring out their natural flavors. A drizzle of that wonderful cream purchased on Tuesday finished this quick and tasty dish.
We now have mushrooms with our leftover Thanksgiving turkey and dressing. They also dressed up a split roll for a quick, late-night snack as we watched 1960’s sci-fi movies and drank champagne.