I ordered two kits from Back to the Roots, and they arrived in less than a week. They offer free shipping if you buy two or more sets. I have since seen the kits in my local Whole Foods. However, I will probably just order refills (the kits cost $19.95 each, and the refills are less than half that).
It took a few days before the little buds appeared, but by Day 7, they were looking like mushrooms. We were all amazed at how quickly they grew, and how, even over the course of a few hours, they had mushroomed in size. Miraculous!
The “soil” in which the mushrooms grow is actually recycled coffee grounds, which can be used as mulch for one’s garden after the mushrooms have been harvested. They come in a compostable cardboard box. Very earth-friendly!.
I adapted this recipe from a dish I had at Luna 61, a wonderful vegetarian restaurant in Tivoli, NY. It is a stroganoff that uses mushrooms instead of meat. I took it to the next level by making it vegan and gluten free, while maintaining the awesome taste. The sherry and nutmeg are two key ingredients that give this dish its signature flavor.
2 tablespoons organic olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped organic shallots
4 cups of coursely chopped mushrooms (I used Trumpet and Crimini)
1/4 cup of organic olive oil or Earth Balance
1/4 cup of organic flour (you can also use wheat or rice)
2 cups of almond milk (you can also use oat,
1/4 cup of sherry, madeira or marsala wine
1/2 teaspoon of ground organic nutmeg
sea salt, to taste
freshly ground pepper, to taste
1 pound of organic pasta, cooked (I used rice pasta for a gluten-free dish)
Saute the shallots in the olive oil over medium heat until the become translucent. Add the mushrooms, and saute until they begin to shrink and darken in color. Set them aside.
In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil or melt the Earth Balance over medium heat, then add the flour, whisking it to blend thoroughly. Cook for a minute or two to cook off the raw flour taste. Add the milk a bit at a time, continuing to whisk as you do this, so as to avoid lumps. Your goal is to create a thick white sauce. Once all of the milk has been integrated, cook and whisk for another minute, then whisk in the sherry. Whisk for another couple of minutes, then remove the sauce from the heat.
Season your sauce with the nutmeg, salt and pepper. Then toss in the mushrooms and stir with spoon until they are well-integrated. Serve warm over pasta, with a side salad. Enjoy!