Why is it that so many people hate mushrooms?Mushrooms

Is it the texture?  They can be slimy or mushy.

Or maybe it’s just mental?  After all, it’s hard to get excited about eating a fungus.

Regardless, mushrooms are one of those food items that LOTS of people hate.  And I was one of them.

But . . .

Mushrooms are incredibly good for you.  They are high in antioxidants (which aren’t depleted during cooking), high in niacin and riboflavin.

Mushrooms are a good source of iron, selenium (studies show that when men have high levels of selenium, their risk of prostrate cancer is less), potassium (helps lower blood pressure), copper and zinc.

In studies, mushrooms have been shown to enhance  immunity and prevent disease.

They are low in calories, low in sodium and low in fat.  And if that’s not enough, they are a wonderful substitute for meat.

So, with all that goodness, how could I not try to teach myself to like them?

Through a lot of trial and error, I discovered that I enjoy portabellas (specifically baby bellas) as long as they are cooked to al dente – not too much so they get slimy, but not so little that they are still a bit spongy.

How did I get there after forty years of refusing to eat them?  It actually was pretty easy.  I started by putting them on pizza or in pasta dishes.  It got to the point where I enjoyed them in those meals.  Then, I started adding them to my omelets (now I feel like an omelet isn’t complete without mushrooms).  Finally, I started preparing them with garlic and olive oil to top hamburgers or steaks.

After about six months, I was able to state that not only can I tolerate mushrooms, I actually like them.

Proof positive that even adults can change their taste preferences.

This month, I’ll be sharing my favorite ways to prepare and enjoy these nutritional gold mines.  To start you off, here is one of my first (and most successful) versions of a pasta dish:  Mushroom penne – it’s perfect for a meatless Monday dinner!

What are YOUR favorite ways to enjoy mushrooms?  Or are you in the hate them and won’t eat them camp?

It’s a new month, which means a new oil – check out the Oil of the Month Club to learn more about this fun and affordable program!

Shared on Inspire Me Monday, WFMW, The Mommy Club, Real Food Wednesdays and Whimsy Wednesdays

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