Taste in Mushrooms

Unusual edible mushrooms

‘Taste’ is used figuratively to mark our differences – our taste in fashion, culture, etc – and that’s how I’m using it here. Because I’d never dare eat any of these.

My sweetheart won’t eat mushrooms at all. it isn’t so much the flavour but the mouth feel. He’s happy for things to be cooked with them, provided any destined for his plate are reallocated to mine. While I’m positively adventurous, compared with him, the bar is set low. I do love mushrooms, especially button ones, but no-one would say I had sophisticated tastes.

Part of the trouble is that I have no faith in my ability to distinguish the edible mushrooms from the deadly ones and I have read too many Agatha Christie books as a girl. You have to assume if mushrooms are being offered for sale, they are OK, but I always entertain a flash of doubt. So while I’ve been going out of my way to sample a few wild raspberries on my walks, I would never dare forage for mushrooms.

In my lifetime, I must have eaten some of the ones above, in Chinese dishes, for example, but not deliberately. I could never see the point in buying them, often at great expense, when the button ones suit me fine.

Porcini mushrooms for sale at 49.50 per lb

I am happy to pay extra for good bread, if I can get it, though there are limits. Willingness to pay a premium price is partly to do with ability – can I stretch to this? – but also with perceived value, built up over a lifetime of associations.

Bread, now: aroma, bite, crust, wholesomeness, nutrients, artisan values, tasty extras like olives, walnuts, seeds, sour cherries even… those things tempt me.

Mushrooms: more spindly looking, more wizened, a higher stalk to cap ratio, more chewy or more melting…?  I just don’t get it. What am I missing?

Shared for Becky’s Square Perspectives. Her post today will raise a smile.

34 Replies to “Taste in Mushrooms”

  1. Fabulous mushrooms, my favourites. I do use the stronger more expensive ones occasionally, but always as an addition to other mushrooms. Kind of an extra kick rather than the main delight.

  2. I love mushrooms, but dare not buy the more unusual ones as identification scares me a little bit.

    Last time I had a mushroom omelette a couple of years ago I was really ill. Don’t know whether it was the Oyster, Enokitaki,Shitake or Brown field mushrooms I used, so I haven’t bought any since. A recent allergy/intolerance test showed I was reactive (to mushrooms which I’ve eaten for most of my life) – one more favourite food now off the shopping list.

    1. I’m sorry you’re intolerant of mushrooms when you enjoy them so much. Do you think you’ve always been that way and just never realised? My mum is gluten intolerant and I am scared I might develop that at some point. I love good bread and can’t imagine anything I’d miss more.

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