Sunday, June 29, 2014

For Such a Picky Eater: Eating Brains

Photo courtesy of of Jeff Hart's bookcover

For such a picky eater I have consumed quite an interesting array of foods in my life.

Pumpkin Blossoms
Lamb Fries (a.k.a. Rocky Mountain Oysters)
Pig Brains
Cow Brains
Bear (In the form of stew)
Dandelion Tea
Morel "Sponge" Mushrooms

Yes it is true. Brains, now considered a delicacy by some while most of the population considers them foul. As a child, I ate them fried for breakfast as a side to my scrambled or soft fried eggs.  At the time delish!  As I got older I couldn't handle the flavor any longer and have not touched them since.

The bear was cooked in a stew and was very similar to pot roast except that it had a much more coarse texture than beef.  Simply it would just require getting used to the texture to enjoy.  I can't remember for sure but I believe it was either Brown Bear or Black Bear.

The wonderful Summer of Dandelion tea!  Oh how fond I am of that memory.  Our family friend Rose Penary brought some over one day and then that summer my Gramma and I would dig dandelions so that Paw-Paw (and of course myself and her too!) could enjoy it.  It was so much fun.

Morels are one of my favorite foods of all time.  You know the mushrooms that sell anywhere between $45.00 to $100.00 per fresh pound each year or up to $200.00 per dehydrated pound.  Yup, those.  They were so abundant in Illinois during my childhood that they were considered a major food source for April.   They were also considered a delicacy however, because you physically hunted for them yourselves and they were usually only available for two to four weeks.  Apparently, if you had just the perfect season they might be available for up to eight weeks but I have never experienced that phenomenon. After April showers the sun would come out and heat up the ground and up would pop the yummy fungi.  Some of my best memories are of Paw-Paw and Gramma hunting and preparing the morels with me.

With Angela O'

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