As I was classifying this post under the Vegetables and legumes category, I remembered that in actual fact mushrooms are scientifically classified as fungus, which are not considered as part of the plant kingdom. Nor are they from the same kingdom as animals, bacteria or protists.
Before advances in microbiology, it was thought that fungi were plants, basically because they look more like a vegetable and they are usually grow stuck in one place. There are a few species that do creep along the floor to find food. I remember studying at university that there are a couple of big sized fungus that do this. Encountering one creeping around the place must be a creepy experience.
Once fungi were able to be studied on a celular level, it was found that their cellular structure was not like those of plants, in fact they are more similar to ours. Anyway, let’s not go deep into all this. Really, if I go into what I studied at uni then inevitably I’ll start talking about funky infections and we don’t really want that. Let’s get back to our nice edible mushroom and a nice recipe for it.
These mushrooms are called red pine mushrooms, also known as saffron milk cap mushrooms. Here in Barcelona I can find them in a few fruit and vegetable shops and markets only when they are in season. They are a lot more meatier and tastier than the normal white mushrooms. The green parts on the mushrooms make it look like they have a fungal infection themselves, however this is normal with this variety of mushrooms.
Roasted Red Pine Mushrooms
You need to prepare by washing these really well. Do take time to do it. Otherwise – and I’m speaking from experience here – you might find that you have crunchy bits of soil hiding between the folds. Just rinse them well and all will be fine.
red pine mushrooms, 1 clove garlic, 1 handful fresh parsley, salt, freshly ground black pepper, extra virgin olive oil
Preheat the oven to 200ºC.
Wash the mushrooms thoroughly. Cut them in halves (or let them remain whole, as you wish) and arrange on a baking tray.
Chop the garlic and parsley. Mix them together in a small bowl along with the rest of the ingredients. Pour over the mushroom.
Cook in the oven for about 30 minutes.
Thank you for reading!