Home Sweet ‘Shroom

Giving the amount of fungal growth in my yard, I wish I was one of those people who could tell which mushrooms you can eat and enjoy*. In retrospect, perhaps I should have seen the pretty orange color of this one as a bad omen for my St. Louis Cardinals.10409291_10100825667492534_8784579148790602323_n

*No, I will not be trusting any of your opinions on the matter either. I know too many people who comment on blogs to trust any of you.

Mushroom Soup for Fungus Day

Editor’s Note – Thanks to Michele we now know that today is the inaugural UK Fungus Day. There was a Fungus Day last year, but it was confined to Wales and, therefore, was “National” Fungus Day (and in the minds of the English did not count anyway).

Ben first gave us this recipe over a year ago (18 September 2012) and we thought it would be a fitting tribute to a long overdue day in tribute to fungi. 

This week’s recipe is a bit of a two-for-one. The “main” recipe is a fall favorite of mine, mushroom soup (PDF – 770kb). This recipe only has five ingredients (not including salt and oil, which are staples, not ingredients), the most important of which is not, in fact, the mushrooms. It’s the stock (PDF – 115kb). Just replace the mushroom with any number of vegetables and we can still make a delicious soup – as long as we start with good stock. So, if we want to understand the science behind great mushroom soup, we need to understand the science behind good stock. Continue reading “Mushroom Soup for Fungus Day”

Scientists against the “War on Drugs”

drugsEveryone has heard about the “War on Drugs”. Most Americans of my generation have sat through D.A.R.E (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) classes in middle school learning how to “just say no”. In addition to their intended effects on rates of drug addiction and, perhaps, unintended effects on the size of the prison population, the laws regulating psychoactive drugs are having a less well-recognized effect.

In a special section of Nature Reviews Neuroscience (Neuroscience and the law-Science and Society) there is an interesting editorial about how Schedule I drug laws are stifling neuroscience research and the development of new treatments. I’ll be honest, my first thought was, “Are these guys just old hippies or do they have a good point?”. David Nutt, Leslie King, and David Nichols may be old hippies, but they also have a point. Continue reading “Scientists against the “War on Drugs””