Orecchiette with Mushroom and Black Beans

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Mushrooms remind me of my grandmother’s palm nut soup; bright and spicy and rich, I can almost hear it bubbling on the coal pot… thick and teaming meat, crabs, dried fish and mushrooms. The mushrooms were my favourite; the kind my grandmother often used grows from the trunk of fallen palm nut trees – I loved the dense chewy texture and how it soaked up the flavour of the soup. A few years ago when a friend was doing his thesis on ‘oil palm mushroom’ farms, I told him about my grandmother’s soup with mushrooms, and memories of my dad foraging for mushrooms. . . .

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