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Posts Tagged ‘grow your own mushrooms’

This half term holiday I’ve treated myself and Thomas and bought a Brown Button Mushroom Growing Kit.

Brown Button Mushroom Kit - £3.99 with code

Brown Button Mushroom Growing Kit

 Every term Thomas has a school project to do at home and next term’s is titled ‘Growing Food’, so I thought we would get organised and get started on it early by growing our own Mushrooms and taking photographs to show the different stages of growth, as well as having some delicious mushrooms to eat in a few weeks.

Each kit contains everything you will need:

  • A black plastic bag which you use to line the box
  • A clear bag containing the ‘Mushroom Compost’.
  • A black bag containing the ‘Casing Layer’.
  1. Empty the mushroom compost in the bottom of your lined box and lightly firm. Spread over the ‘Casing Layer’ (which has been moistened with half a litre of water) and lightly mix the two layers together leaving the surface rough.
  2. Rest the lid on top of the box at an angle and put in a warm place for about a week and a white fluffy mycelium should appear on the surface.
  3. Remove the lid and place in a cooler dark location, use a mist spray to keep the surface damp.
  4. Mushroom should begin to appear after about a week, pick them as small or as large as you like.

Growing Mushrooms from a kit couldn’t be easier and is a fun and fascinating thing to do, especially with children.

These Mushroom Kits are available now (while stocks last) for only £3.99 with any other purchase from The Recycleworks website.

Gill

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One of my favourite things about Autumn is going mushrooming, it is something that I have done since I was little and it’s something that I now do with Thomas. There’s a mix of excitement, anticipation and expectation as we put on our wellies and set off with our carrier bags but over the past few years there has also been disappointment too as they are now less common in our local fields.

Field Mushrooms are most commonly found after rain in fields and meadows that are grazed by horses, cattle or sheep or even in parks and lawns. The field mushroom has a beautiful white cap that grows from 3-10cm in diameter; it is umbrella shaped at first but flattens out as it grows. Underneath the cap are gills which are initially pink then change to red-brown and then dark brown as they mature. Field Mushrooms can be found from late Summer into Autumn and can be easily confused with other similar varieties which are poisonous, if you are in any doubt don’t pick or eat them.

Although I always love looking for mushrooms I have never really been keen on eating them afterwards.

My advice is to get out there, enjoy the hunt and the fresh air and make it into a fun family competition to see who can spot the first, the biggest, the smallest and the most mushrooms, take your camera with you.

Gill and Thomas, age 2, after a successful mushroom hunt

This photograph was taken in August 2006 and was the last time that we had a good mushroom season.

You can grow your own mushrooms at home with a Mushroom Kit and watch little white dots develop into white ‘buttons’ and then into white umbrellas, they grow like magic and are totally safe to eat. You will get that mix of excitement, anticipation and expectation as you take a peak at them first thing in the morning but of course you don’t need your wellies.

White Button Mushroom Kit

White Button Mushroom Kit

Have a go at growing your own; they are ideal for children and perfect for the winter months when getting out into the garden seems impossible.

Gill

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A Happy New Gardening year to you all, although the weather over the festive period has been very unfavourable for outdoor gardening there are still things that can be grown indoors. One of my favourite things that I grew as a child were indoor mushrooms using a mushroom growing kit, this is very easy to do and very rewarding. Mushroom kits are available with either white or brown mushrooms which are both equally delicious. Mushrooms are excellent for children to grow and there is great excitement at looking in the box in the morning to find perfect edible mushrooms. 

White Button Mushroom Growing Kit

The mushroom growing kits include all the equipment and instructions that you need to get started including quality spawned compost, a growing container and culturals. The process involved is quite straightforward:

First moisten the casing layer contained in the black bag.

After an hour empty the bag over the compost in the growing container and spread out evenly using your fingertips slightly mixing into the compost underneath and leaving the surface rough.

Moisten the surface of the compost using a bottle sprayer.

Place the black plastic bag that contained the casing layer over the top of the kit and place in a warm environment for about a week until a white fluffy mycelium appears.

Remove the lid and place in a cooler draught free position checking daily that the contents do not dry out and using the bottle sprayer to keep the surface damp.

Mushrooms should begin to appear after about a week, these can be harvested when they are small or as large as you like.

The first crop of mushrooms can be harvested for about four days after this repeat the process for a second crop.

Mushrooms are very useful ingredient in many recipes but I think that one of the best ways to use them, if you have a plentiful supply, is a hearty and warming mushroom soup which is very welcome on these cold winter days.

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We are still enjoying a steady supply of mushrooms from our Mushroom Growing Kit, and as promised this week we have one of our favourite yummy mushroom recipes for you.  My children love this recipe, which is always a good sign, and it’s ready in around 20 minutes!

Garlic & Mushroom Pasta

Ingredients

Knob of butter
1½lb mushrooms, thickly sliced
1 medium onion peeled and chopped finely
350g pasta
Dash of lemon juice
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and black pepper
Fresh cream
Grated parmesan cheese

Method

1. Melt the butter in a pan, add the onions and cook until soft.

2. Add the mushrooms, cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

2. Meanwhile bring a large pan of salted water to the boil, add the pasta and cook for 10-12 minutes.

3. To the pan of mushrooms and onions, add the lemon juice and garlic, cover and cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the parsley, salt and pepper and mix well. Add around 5 tablespoons of cream and heat through.

4. Drain the pasta well and toss in the sauce. Add more cream if necessary.  Sprinkle grated parmesan cheese on the top and serve.

For a healthier option try substituting some of the cream for creme fraiche.  This dish is nice with a side dish of crispy salad leaves.

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If you follow our blog regularly you will know that we received our lovely Mushroom Growing Kit a few weeks ago.  We were very excited and took it straight home to get started.  The kit includes full, easy to follow instructions along with everything you need to get a good crop of mushrooms!

First we took the casing soil, placed it in a bucket and added some tap water.  We then covered it in some foil and left it for 24 hours.

Next we opened the growing kit which was full of mushroom spores.  We gently spread the moist casing soil evenly over the top of the kit. 

We then sprayed the soil with a hand spray everyday to keep it nice and moist.  We kept the kit closed in between times to keep the atmosphere inside damp. 

Very soon the compost became covered with small white dots – the beginnings of our mushrooms!

We kept spraying the soil to keep it moist and on day 7 we installed the water reservoir (included in the kit).

After around 3 and a half weeks our mushrooms were big enough to start picking.  It is best to pick them when they are around 3-5cm in size.  We have a steady stream still coming and pick a handful every few days! 

The kit has been fantastic fun for the family ..the children’s expectation and excitement making it so much fun …And as the mushrooms literally double in size some nights, we now understand where the description of something having mushroomed, comes from!!

 To buy your own Mushroom Growing Kit click HERE.  …And visit the blog next week for our favourite mushroom recipe!

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Mushroom Growing Kit arrived on my desk a couple of weeks ago, with a little note from Sylvia to give it a whirl.  I was full of excited expectation as I have very clear memories of having a similar kit as a child. 

 

My mum helped me to set it up and then each day I would check it to see if the mushrooms had started to grow.  After a week or so little white specks began to appear on the soil and I still remember my complete amazement as these perfectly white wonders seemed to literally grow before my very eyes.  …And once they started there was no stopping them – a fantastic childhood memory!

So equiped with my kit I set off home and over the last week or so the children and I have had a fun new indoor growing project to do.  We’ve been taking photos along the way and the results look like they are going to be every bit as good as I’d hoped.  Check back next week for the full story with pictures, and some tasty mushroom recipe ideas.

In the meantime check out the Mushroom Growing Kits we have available to buy.  We have sourced these kits very carefully for freshness and for the high quality of the growing medium and the spores.  They are excellent quality and by following the simple instructions you will get some great results.  ….And unlike in my childhood there are White Shiitake or Brown Button Mushrooms to choose from!

Delicious Shiitake Mushrooms available from http://www.recycleworks.co.uk

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