Wild Mushroom Pasta

I'm a big fan of Good Eats and Alton Brown. I've learned a lot from him. So when he suggested that dried exotic mushrooms were an umani flavor bomb I took to amazon to procure some. 

When you only cook with and eat plants, sources of deep and real flavor are important. 

His advice was spot on. I got a dried exotic mushroom mix and used it in my pressure cooker to create a sauce/broth for pasta and even though I forgot to add olive oil, it still had tons of flavor. 
After the pressure cook was finished I added the oil I forgot and cooked it off for a  few minutes. I then stirred it into my precooked pasta. Let it rest 5 minutes to tighten up. It was a perfect sauce to enrobe my pasta. . 

Dried exotic mushrooms are not cheap. But if you don't eat/cook with animal products, they feel like a bargain. There's so much flavor to be had. It's worth it and then some. 

Ingredients
1/2 box pasta, cooked to al dente

2 ounces dried fancy mushroom mix, big pieces broken or diced
1 pint …

Balsamic Peaches

Here's a sweet and tart salad addition that will interest peach lovers or anyone with a sweet tooth. When faced with an aging peach that no one wanted I decided to cook it and make a sweet and succulent addition to my usual salad lunch.

I decided to leave the skin on the peach because I just so happen to be a fan of fruit and vegetable skins. That's the way nature made it and that's the way I want to eat it.

This is really simple and easy. I just sliced the peach in small chunks and cooked it in a fairly hot frying pan. Just to lightly brown and caramelize it.

Then I added some balsamic vinaigrette salad dressing and cooked it 30 second to a 1 minute longer.

Removed from pan and seasoned with salt and black pepper.

I'm not really a big fan of fruit. It's a little too sweet for my taste. But this made a great out of the ordinary addition to my usual salads. The balsamic peaches added a sweet and tart element and helped to dress the salad. They also offered an additional texture not usually present.

This technique could work well with any number of fruits. Apples, mangoes, pineapple and many more I'm sure.

I don't usually like fruit in salads. But these were a nice summery surprise to mix in my usual bowl of crispy romaine, steamed broccoli and roasted sweet corn.

These peaches would also make a wonderful topping for vanilla frozen yogurt or an awesome dessert on their own topped with some whipped cream and or cinnamon/nutmeg.