July 20, 2011

The Mystery of Mushrooms: A Reader Survey

Hello readers! Apparently you number in the double digits, so a big thank you and I hope you keep coming back :) One thing I’d like to do with this blog is get your thoughts and ideas on food and cooking, so from time to time I plan to include a question or two with a post - please post answers in the comments!

For my first reader survey, some background on one of my food idiosyncrasies: I HATE mushrooms.  I always have. There are quite a few foods I disliked as a child that I’ve since learned to love (or at least tolerate), among them rice (love!), spinach (love!) and hardboiled eggs (currently tolerate, but that egg salad recipe may just have turned them into a love). But mushrooms I cannot do. It’s everything about them: the texture, the taste, and, strangely enough, even the smell of cooking mushrooms. I’ve tried them a lot of ways, and I’ve tried a lot of varieties, but stuffed or sauteed, porcini or portobello, they just don’t do it for me.


That said, I strive to be an adventurous eater (not that mushrooms really should require a lot of adventure), and there are so many recipes and dishes out there that include mushrooms as a main ingredient. Obviously they are something that most of the rest of the world enjoys, and truth be told, I’m a little sad that I don’t enjoy them too.  There are times when I look at a recipe that I know would gross me out...but the way the writer describes it sounds so good!  Because that person loves mushrooms.

If you are a mushroom lover yourself, what recipe do you think would be the one that could make me a convert?  I’ll try them out (spirit of adventurism!) and if any of them stick, I’ll give you a shout-out in a post about your recipe.

For all readers, what are your mushrooms? What is the one food you can’t stand, no matter how common or beloved it is by the rest of the world and/or immediate family members? Do you ever wish you, too, could enjoy that food, or are you happy to avoid it at all costs?


  1. We know my mushrooms are seafood. But we are working on that one.

  2. I hated mushrooms until I was in law school. What converted me was, oddly, plain whole mushrooms in a fondue. You should try this mushroom strudel, that I've made many time to rave reviews: http://www.myrecipes.com/recipe/mushroom-caramelized-shallot-strudel-10000000357646/

    And my mushrooms (now that I like actual mushrooms) are peppers. HATE.

  3. @Matthew - yes, I'm excited to make the grilled shrimp and grits and maybe, possibly, turn you into a seafood lover

    @Joanna - I will try out the strudel and let you know how it turns out!

  4. Esther, congrats on the blog! I didn't always like mushrooms either, but they are my favorite vegetable now. I put them in everything. Honestly, I can't really remember how I came to like them.

    Now, corn off the cob is my mushroom. I love corn on the cob, but won't eat it any other way--not even at Chipotle:)

  5. Esther,
    love that there are others out there constantly looking for new recipes, though you are probably more adventurous than I am. But I can use your blog for new recipes instead of browsing the www.

    Now, I've always loved mushrooms, all mushrooms in whatever form they come. However my mushroom used to be cheese - up until I was probably 21 I didn't eat any type of cheese.

  6. This must be a family thing because I HATE mushrooms. Not so much the smell or taste, but the texture. I. cannot. get. past. the. rubbery-ness.

    When I'm making homemade spaghetti and it's not to serve guests or anything, I chop up the mushrooms into itty bitty pieces (like the size of chopped garlic) and put them in the sauce that way. Then I still get the flavor that it adds to the sauce, but I don't have to put up with the texture!

    Also--not a fan of tofu. Maybe I just haven't had it right or something, but again--it's the texture that does it to me!

  7. @Shirley - tofu is another one of the foods that I've come to love. But I've never made it myself, in any form! It's on my list to experiment with this summer. I can totally understand the texture thing, that's what turned me off to it for a long time.