Saturday, October 13, 2012

MoFo #13: Kabocha-shiitake dip (aka Dirty Mushroom Dip)

So I bought the most beautiful little kabocha squash at the farmer's market this week, with no idea what I'd use it for.  I considered slicing and roasting fingers of it as dippers, but in the end, I just made a dip with it:

Kabocha-mushroom dip

When I think of an idea for a recipe to make, I often google it a bit first.  I like to do this for two reasons:  

1) to find out if anyone has tried this before/if a significant number of people have tried it -- if no one has tried it, or like 2 bloggers have done it ever, then maybe it's kind of a crazy idea and I should go into it with a grain of salt.

2) to see if there's a recipe that I'd like to use unaltered.

It's rare that I find a recipe that fits #2.  It's much more common that I read a bunch of recipes and then sort of mash them into one, or pick one that's close to what I want and tailor it, and so on.  I'm not particularly picky, but I cook a lot and I eat a lot, and I think about food A LOT, and kind of I know what I want.

For tonight's recipe, I thought I was going to make a recipe directly as written on another site.  Actually, the very first google hit!  Namely, this recipe on  It looked and sounded so dreamy!  Click the link, see how it's so nicely plated inside the squash shell, then come back.  I'll wait.

After I roasted my kabocha squash, though, I realized it had come out a bit dry.  When I tried to puree all the ingredients in the blender, it wouldn't go at all.  So first I added a 1/4c water, then I tasted it.  Good, but a little too squashy, if you know what I mean.  Added a tbsp of olive oil, half a tsp of salt, pureed a bit more.  Tasted again... almost too umami.  Added a tsp of maple syrup and tried again.

The end result is quite delicious, but odd.  It certainly LOOKS like a squash dip.  But you know what it tastes like?

Like a mushroom.  Like a mushroom that last took a bath never.

And so it is that we have been calling it Dirty Mushroom Dip in our house.

I think my mushroom choice was to blame-- I used 5 very small shiitakes rather than 6 buttons or creminis.  J loved it, so it wasn't a loss, just not quite what I was hoping for.

Some good looking carrots

Dippers were good tonight.  We had the cauliflower in the dip picture (really good with all the earthy flavors going on here), zucchini, and two colors of carrots.  And whole wheat pita bread.  The Emperor mostly had bread-- the tooth is still bugging him.  He loved the dip though... here he is blissing out over it:

In dip Nirvana

And one more cheerful looking boy before I go:

Ready for shipment

Wish it wasn't so blurry, because this is otherwise such a perfect picture.  

Speaking of wishes-- thanks for the well wishes re: my health.  My cold has passed as quickly as it came.  3 days total!  Can't complain about that!  Must be my healthy vegan diet, ho ho ho.


Amey said...

magician in a box!!! that really is a *great* picture! I'm so glad to hear that your cold is moving right along. Phew! You've got enough on your plate without a cold bringing you down!! :) Kabochas are the best. I have been a little bit in denial about fall this year, and I haven't bought any squashes yet... but perhaps it is time.

adriennefriend said...

AH! First MoFo post all day to make me laugh out loud! It was this line, of course: "Like a mushroom. Like a mushroom that last took a bath never."


Oh, and I do the same 1) and 2) things when I come up with recipe ideas, for the same reasons. Great minds... :)

adrienne at