Seriously, the staff at La Madia must think I’m such a pimp. On a near-weekly basis I arrive for an early dinner, a new beautiful tattooed lady on my arm, and order up some warm niçoise olives with toasted garlic, thyme and chilies and a wild mushroom pizza. Then I disappear for a week only to return again with another girl. It’s not easy wooing every woman in Chicago, but I do my best for a straight married lady. My secret weapon? A pile of fungus and some smoked mozzarella. Works like a charm.

Now, I’m no Jonathon Fox, although I make a decent pizza dough – but sometimes a lady wants to enjoy her pizza while wearing her jammies and watching a little Walking Dead. But those mushrooms… those fresh, woodsy, beautiful mushrooms! Where’s a gal to find them in early November in the heart of the Midwest?

Like a knight in fungal armor, the BTTR Gourmet Garden from Back to the Roots came to my rescue. I actually heard about the company through Social Venture Network – I loved their sustainable approach to home gardening (especially for us no-yard-havin’ city slickers) and I ordered my pearl oyster mushroom kit right away. Because I am a notorious mushroom pimp, they got in touch to let me know about something really cool they’re doing through the end of the year, to offer up some savings to you guys, and to give a kit away to one of my lucky readers.

Throughout this November and December, BTTR is donating 5% of their sales to breast cancer research. It’s been almost one year since I lost a good friend to cancer, and I’ve spent the last 12 months doing anything and everything I could think of to help run cancer off this planet. I think it’s wonderful that a company that is already using its business model to make the world a cleaner, happier place is taking this extra step. Additionally, they’re offering Bake and Destroy readers 20% off their grow-at-home kits – just enter bake20 at check out!

As we were exchanging emails I saw the photo of the pasta dish above and said, “So, it’s cool that you’re encouraging people to grow their own food, donating money to cancer research, giving my readers a deal and offering one of your kits but um – could I also have the recipe for that pasta dish?” Man, these are generous people, they forked it right over. So here’s the recipe for Oyster Mushroom Pasta in Pink Sauce (for four):

You’ll need:

  • 1 pound spaghetti (you can also use fettuccine, angel hair or any long pasta shape)
  • 1 cup minced onion (1 small onion)
  • ¼ cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 3 cups almond or dairy milk
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast
  • ¼ cup organic tomato paste
  • 5 ounces BTTR Oyster Mushrooms, left whole or sliced
  • ¼ bunch parsley, finely chopped
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Then you:

  1. Boil the pasta in salted water per package instructions. In the meantime, sauté onion in 2 tablespoons olive oil with 1 teaspoon of salt over medium heat until completely soft, stirring frequently to avoid browning. Add garlic and cook a few minutes longer.
  2. In a blender, combine the onion/garlic mixture, milk, nutritional yeast, and tomato paste. Process until very smooth, adding salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Sauté mushrooms in 2 tablespoons olive oil and pinch of salt over medium/high heat until soft and browned.

Toss pasta with the pink sauce, mushrooms, and garnish with parsley. Serve hot and creamy! (Thanks to Chef Chloe for sharing that!)

Obviously you’re all going to buy a kit right now so you can do your part to fund breast cancer research. But for those of you who’d like another kit to give your favorite sexy pizza date, BTTR is giving a kit away to one of my readers. Leave me a comment about your favorite mushroomy dish and I’ll choose a random winner to receive the kit. (US residents only, please.) Leave additional comments if you like BTTR on Facebook or follow them on Twitter – those will count as additional entries! Good luck and happy sporing.