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Explore Ingredient

This section is all about getting out of your comfort zone and trying something new. It is amazing how much one ingredient can enhance a food experience. You can take this ingredient and think of other creative ways to use it. The point is to have some (FUN) in the kitchen and explore.

In the November box, I have chosen Porcini Mushroom Powder. As the name implies, it is dehydrated porcini mushrooms that are ground to a fine powder. First things first, this is typically the portion of the blog where I discuss aroma. I must admit, the aroma isn’t the most pleasant. Porcini powder is a flavor enhancer and like most flavor enhancers it is a bit overwhelming to smell in it’s raw form. If you want to taste the Porcini powder in it’s raw form I suggest mixing 1 part salt with 2 parts Porcini powder and your tastebuds will explode with umami richness. I started using Porcini powder a few years ago shortly after becoming a pescatarian. I am born and raised in the South and a lot of Southern cooking is seasoned with pork or some kind of meat product. Cooking green beans, pinto beans, collards, cabbage, etc without meat left me missing something until I found Porcini powder. If you want to begin a meatless Monday routine or if you have a non meat eater coming for the holidays give this a try! Get creative and have some (FUN).

Here are some great ideas to use your Porcini Mushroom Powder:

· Cooked Vegetables/Beans (collard greens, cabbage, green beans, pinto beans, black-eyed peas)

· Rice dishes

· Soups/Stews/Sauces

· Casseroles

· Homemade Vegetable Broth

· Create Your Own Rub (Porcini Powder, Chinese Five Spice, cayenne, salt, pepper, etc.)

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