vegansaurus!

09/19/2011

I grew mushrooms, and you can too!  »

Look what I made! It’s oyster mushrooms, growing out of a box, and heading straight for my belly! 

The box, as you may or may not be able to tell from my crappy, grainy photo (sorry) is a kit from Back to the Roots. The kit is pretty rad and makes growing fungus on top of your refrigerator a miraculous joy instead of just a gross accident, like it normally would be.

The whole thing started right at U.C. Berkeley in 2009, when a pair of students figured out they could become rich and famous by selling people kits to grow mushrooms on coffee grounds. 

I first encountered these kits in an earlier iteration for sale at Berkeley Hort in mid-2010. I bought one for my man for his birthday, but you had to collect your own coffee grounds and we only drink a little coffee, so that took forever. By the time we had enough, the mushroom spore/coffee mixture had molded; it was a messy disaster.

Fast-forward to this year’s VegFest Colorado in Boulder, which I will remind you is 1,250 miles from Berkeley. Lo and behold, there was a Back to the Roots booth! This stuff had gone global (or at least regional)! I told the lady at the table about my sad, gloppy failure, and she was totally puzzled. See, now the kits come pre-loaded with coffee grounds (they come from Peet’s), and is much fancier and easier. She gave me a free one so I could try again and write this review.

Well, VegFest lady, it took me forever but I have tried, and I have conquered, and I say to the pink dinosaur-loving masses, go grow thee some mushrooms!

Step 1 involves slitting open the bag of mushroom spores (white) and coffee grounds (black) and soaking them in water for 24 hours. The water turned all dark like coffee; it was kind of gross, but not really that bad.

Next, you put the bag back in the box, put the box in a spot with indirect light, and keep the whole thing moist by misting it twice a day. For nearly a week, it looked like NOTHING was happening. Then BAM, it was like super-speed.

See all those little shroomies poking out on the right of the opening? I’d leave for a few hours, and when I came back, they would be noticeably bigger. Every time! It was like The Peanut Butter Solution. SO COOL!

I harvested a batch and they were tasty. I’m going to see if more grow, then I’m going to flip the kit over and open the other side and do it again. I’ll update if there’s more news. Home-grown mushrooms. Love ‘em.

09/01/2010

Good morning, adorable! SaveABunny has BABY BUNNIES! On July 26, Cybele the rabbit was dumped at San Francisco Animal Care and Control, and two days later she popped out a passel of kits (and adult rabbits are “bucks” and “does,” respectively). Good job, mama. There are four* little bitty baby buns, two sisters and two brothers, and they are too young to adopt yet but oh when they are weaned HELLO NEW BEST FRIENDS.

Honestly, just when you think there’s nothing cuter than a bunny video, a baby bunny video appears and basically blinds you with its adorability. Everything that isn’t a baby bunny is hideous to me now. Get out of my sight, fawns. Back off, tiny owls. Even orphan sloths in sock-pajamas look like gargoyles in the brilliant light of these brand-new baby bunnies. Do you think they have a special baby-bunny smell, like baby humans? I want to touch noses with them. You guys I am dead, over here. Dead.

If you’re interested in giving this little family a foster home, get in touch with SaveABunny! They would love to hear from you.

*Yes, there are five little munchkins in the video, but the teensiest one has since died.

UPDATE: Here is ANOTHER VIDEO OF BABY BUNNIES! These are ORPHAN, DWARF BABY BUNNIES, and a very nice man is BOTTLE-FEEDING THEM. Yes, dwarf buns, as in the kind who grow up to be as “big” (read: teeneh-tineh) as Official Vegansaurus Bun Nibbler, who weighs all of 2.5 pounds. Check this out and try not to die all over again. Criminy Christmas, SaveABunny, it is too early in the morning to double the heartbreaking cuteness on a person.


[can’t see this video? watch it at vegansaurus.com!] 

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