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G is for girolles

I could have filed this one under G twice - these cute little fawn-coloured mushrooms go by the moniker of 'golden chanterelles' or 'girolles'.

I have a casual, send-a-Christmas-card-but-not-much-more sort of relationship with mushrooms: Mr Flicking the Vs doesn't like them, so I don't cook them for both of us, and I can't usually be bothered to get some in just for myself. Aside from being a huge fan of the shiitake, the rest of the mushroom world I can take or leave.

I thought it was time to remedy that, and picked up a couple of handfuls of girolles at Turnips in Borough Market. Boy, were they not cheap. These little blighters are the the caviar of the vegan world - you better hope a little goes a long way, because if you're on a normal budget, you're not going to be going back for seconds if they don't.

But what to do with these fungi I've never cooked with before? A quick browse through Google's best suggestions and I went for this girolle pilau recipe, with the usual vegan tweaks.

There were also tweaks necessitated by not having a fair whack of the ingredients the recipe called for in my possession: fine black cumin became the common or garden sort, red onion became white, basmati rice soaked for as long as possible became basmati rice not soaked for very long at all, and parsley, dill and majoram magically transmografied into a bit of ratty coriander from the back of my fridge.

This is what the end result came out like:

The girolles were a subtle flavour, a little bit mulchy, lightly meaty and bouncy beneath the tooth.

The recipe was a little bit light on spice and heavy on fat for my palate - yeah, I know, picky, picky - but I happily troughed down a bowlful and wouldn't have minded a second helping either.

Much as I liked the girolle, given the price of a 100g or so, it's not going to be making a regular appearance in my kitchen. Still, there's something pleasantly spendthrift about knowing you're eating £4 of mushrooms in a single plate.

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  1. I'm not a huge mushroom fan -- something about the texture puts me off a bit. Can't believe those mushrooms were that expensive, but it's worth trying once I think :)

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  3. Oh I love mushrooms! You are finding the most unusual ingredients for yr alphabet; I love it.

  4. I love mushrooms and have never heard of these before. I think I'm going to have to try them. I'm loving all of the different ingredients you are coming up with for vegan mofo.

  5. I'm a massive mushroom fan but I don't think I've ever had those. The risotto looks great.

  6. I love mushrooms but stick mainly to the more affordable ones. I should at least try something more exotic so I know what I'm missing.

  7. I like regular mushies (button, swiss, poratobello) but I am not a fan of the more exotic kinds and that includes the French ones but, this looks like a dish my dad used to make, especially the fact that you found it a bit fatty/oily, brings back memories!

  8. I've never heard of these mushies before. It looks like a great dish even if it was an expensive one.

  9. I love mushrooms! But I, like you, have dated people who don't care for them at all, so just got used to cooking without them. And yeah, shiitakes are probably the best, but portobellos are damn good too! And it's also a blessing and a curse to have a picky palate - seeking out amazing food (and not just ho hum food) is good, but being disappointed (especially in restaurants) is less good.


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