One year ago, if you would have asked if I wanted mushrooms on my pizza or in my salad or raw, the answer was no, thank you. In the back of my twisted mind I would be judging you and making a fungi joke as well. I love my vegetables: asparagus winning my top prize, but mushrooms made me squeamish.
And then, like so many other hated foods, I woke up one day and wanted mushrooms. Fresh, cooked, doused in olive oil, roasted with sea salt. It didn’t matter. The craving was real and I was excited about it. This week, I tried cooking a Portobello for the very first time by myself…
It was amazing. And fresh. And easy. And so, so incredibly good for you.
2 Portobello Mushroom caps, cleaned
2 parts Olive Oil
1 part Balsamic
2 tsp. Chopped Garlic
Sliced Tomatoes, Lettuce and all other toppings you love
Whole Wheat or Multi-grain bread
- Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
- Clean your mushrooms and remove the stems.
- Mix your olive oil, balsamic, garlic, salt and pepper together in a small bowl. Marinate the mushrooms in the mixture for ten minutes on each side (or marinate in plastic bag, making sure the whole mushroom is covered, for 10 minutes total).
- While the mushroom is marinating, clean and thinly slice your tomatoes. Spread them on an ungreased baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil and salt. Place bread on baking sheet as well. Brush with a small amount of olive oil. Set aside.
- Over medium-high heat, warm a tablespoon of olive oil in a saucepan. Place your now marinated mushrooms on the pan, for 10 minutes on each side.
- After you flip your mushroom to the second side, place the tomatoes and bread in the oven for 7 minutes.
- Once finished, remove the roasted bread and tomatoes from the oven and prepare on plate. Drizzle balsamic on the bread, place your mushroom, tomatoes, lettuce and other fixings on top.
I always find myself rushing around as the days wind down until Christmas morning. The ideas are clear to me, I know what I want to get, but actually getting it done never seems to go my way. So I run from store to store, and try to pack everything into my carry-on before hopping a plane to Ohio. This year I vow to be different.
And if, for whatever reason I find myself running around New York, shopping bags flying into everyone I pass, I hope you’ll forgive me. I really had good intentions. So I offer a small gift guide for last-minute shoppers like myself…
Clockwise from the giraffe…
Animal Tattoos. For your toddler nephew who knows what sound a giraffe makes (and a fox). (Tattly; $15/set of 8)
Elegant Earrings. For your mother who has impeccable style but would never buy them for herself. (Anthropologie; $28)
Fleece-lined Tights. For every girl you know who just wants to feel like they are in sweats when they dress up for work. (Urban Outfitters; 2 for $22)
Tree Scented Candle. For your future mother-in-law who is “totally not ready for Christmas,” according to her grandson. (Lafco; $60)
Big Sur Cologne. For the boyfriend who planned the perfect place to propose. (Juniper Ridge; $55)
The Beer Deck. For the brother who loves cards… and beer. (J. Crew; $15)
I hope to offer more to you as the days wind down. Are you done Christmas shopping? I’d love to hear suggestions…
A friend, who also recently got engaged, voiced something she was struggling with in the planning process. Her and her fiance are getting married in March and one of the “to-do’s” that I thought was going to be easy, she was finding difficult.
After listening to her discuss all of the options, my mind started to feel overwhelmed as well. At first, I didn’t want to register. I wanted no gifts — we already have an apartment together, we already have everything we could possibly need. But would you go to a wedding without a gift? Hopefully not.
The alternatives that have crossed my mind reach to everything you can imagine, from the simple to the extravagant. The options seem to be endless when you do the research.
+Maybe we would urge our guests to donate to a charity instead (I Do Foundation) or bring a gift for a local charity…
+Or we have a cash donation site (Deposit a Gift)…
+Lastly, we could go traditional. Crate and Barrel, Bed Bath and Beyond, Pottery Barn, West Elm… all places we love.
In the end, after my head spun around and discussions floated through rooms, I began to think about this day and what it means to you, the guests, instead of me, the bride. When I go to a wedding, I want the bride and groom to know how thankful I am to have been invited, to be able to celebrate and to show them my love. Sometimes you only get a few minutes to hug them, say how beautiful she looks and you are on your way. So the card, the money or the gift solidifies your thoughts. Just in case they missed you…
With all the alternatives out there, we decided traditional registry is right for us, for now. (I am desperately in need of an apple corer…)
What did you do for your wedding? Anything funky? I’d love to hear!
Our turkey basters took on whole new looks this year. The first picture is Frey at 2, basting the grilled turkey with Uncle Zach last year. It’s followed by a couple from last week; Frey at 3. Next week, Frey turns 4! We can’t wait!
And, psst… if you are looking for the perfect book for your little one this holiday, go with We’re Going on a Bear Hunt. Not only is it a classic, but getting stuck in mud — thick, oozy mud — with all your cousins and papa’s enormous voice taking you on that adventure could make a childhood.
This Monday seems a bit harder than the rest. Not because of the amount of blessings that put a smile on my face but because we were so spoiled for a short amount of time and now have to go back to work, to normalcy, to New York during the holidays…
+Thanksgiving. How can you not be thankful for the one time during the year when you get to see your family and friends, eat amazing food (stuffing!), catch up, drink, play cards and focus on each other for at least a moment. Thanksgiving is special.
+Girls Days. The newest Shellhammer tradition? Girls day on the Friday after Thanksgiving. We invite any family that is in town and head up to Michigan for some food, drinks and a bit of shopping. It gets better and better every year.
+Rivalry. Every two years, the Buckeyes make their way up to Ann Arbor to play one of the most intense rivalry games in sports. We follow, up 23, to enjoy some hot apple cider and cheer loud for our beloved scarlet and grey. It never matters the records going into the game; anything can happen. And we are always entertained.
+Best Friends. When you don’t see someone for months but as soon as you do, you fall back into old habits of pure joy. Our high school group is pretty lucky to have that.
+Big Moves. Oh, and my college friends are pretty awesome too, with moves to DC, to Columbus, graduations and engagements, I couldn’t be more happy for these beautiful girls.
+New York During the Holidays, I suppose. As hard as it is to make it to work with the influx of tourists, there is much to be said about appreciating the beauty of the Christmas displays in New York. (Will you be watching the tree lighting on Wednesday?)
+Scones. I’ve had some bad scones in my life; too dry, too crumbly, too blah. But our family has a secret that I hadn’t tried. My mom whipped some up yesterday and I instantly fell in love. I will be making again soon.
+Input. I was finally able to get input from my family and friends on wedding decisions — dress, food and all in between.
+No Delays and Clouds. Just quick, easy flights this holiday. The fact that I have the opportunity to fly makes me quite happy and sunsets from the air are that much better.
+Love, love, love.