Forest-Gourmet: The Tale of the Giant Puffball Mushroom


We live almost out in the country, and we are nearly surrounded by woods. Last fall, our yard sprouted the strangest of fungi, a wobbly orb of mushroom that looked more like it came from sports or space than some sort of natural earthly thing. As it was, some playful visitors decided to kick it about before we were able to pick it.  The good news is: it's a spore-filled thing and this year brought us a new puffball:

Some research yielded some interesting recipes and we decided to try two dinnertime selections.  One was this great baked verson where the inside was removed, and combined with peppers and onions, then returned to the hollowed out globe and baked. My favorite. Mr. Poppycakes preferred the sound of butter, saute, garlic, black pepper and melted mozzarella. But the research also claimed that this delicious treasure we'd found had a short shelf life, so we started to think of ways to use it quickly. We arrived at a garlic, olive oil, black pepper saute folded into a swiss lace cheese omelet and served with good thick bread and pumpkin butter.

First, we had to cut the thing open, a task that revealed the perfect marshmallow-type firm texture and a color that was an indicator of readyness.

Once I cut into it, it was clear that I would be making each of the three dishes as the mushroom's size allowed for so much interesting experimenting. With one quarter of the enormous orb, I was able to get a one amazingly-stuffed, insanely-flavorful omelet underway.

My pickiest taster, Mr. Poppycakes declared it a five star breakfast and the leftover mushroom means more menus this week and more posts.