Laundry and Mushroom Gravy

My first attempt at laundry was a near disaster.

My parents and brothers were off doing some boy scout activity, leaving me home alone for hours.  As a sixth-grader, I felt that the best way to stay out of trouble was to clean my room.  (I also might have been instructed to do so, but that’s miscellaneous information.)

The basic cleaning and dusting tasks were things that I could manage quite well.  However, I decided to be extra-helpful and wash my comforter and bedding. Now, it was a “rite of passage” in my family to pick out your own, very nice comforter that matched your painted room.

Therefore, I lugged down my Laura Ashley comforter and all of the sheets to the basement and analyzed the situation. The dryer was something I was comfortable with, but the washing machine was a whole different story. I had never used it before, but my 11-year-old brain figured it couldn’t be that difficult.

I then proceeded to stuff all of the sheets, bed ruffle, and comforter into the washing machine (it took a lot of effort to cram everything in) and turned the water to medium and heavy load. Next I surveyed my options. There were numerous boxes of powdered stuff, which I had no idea what to use. Then I spotted the only thing I recognized:

Extra Strength Clorox in Spring Floral.

I still maintain to this day that the bottle did not say “bleach” in large letters anywhere.

My only saving grace is that I poured a smaller than recommended amount into the detergent dispenser and not directly into the water, which meant that I ended up only with a comforter with slightly faded flowers BUT the white parts of the design were quite bright.

After learning of my mistake from my mother, I took a break from attempting laundry for a while.

Easy Instructions Peppered Mushroom Wine Gravy

as shown on my flank steak


  • 8 oz baby bella mushrooms (can also use white button or portobello), sliced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp pepper
  • 3 tbsp worchestershire sauce
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1/2 c red wine
  • 1 c skim milk (could substitute vegetable broth if desired)
  • Salt


  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat until shimmery.
  2. Add in mushrooms, onion, and pepper. Saute for 5 minutes.
  3. Add worchestershire sauce and cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  4. Sprinkle flour over mushroom mixture, reduce heat to low, and stir until you can’t see any white granules (be sure to scrape bottom of the pan)
  5. Add in red wine and return heat to medium.
  6. Stir in milk, 1/2 c at a time. Cook for a low simmer for 10-15 minutes, stirring and scraping bottom of the pan every few minutes, until gravy is to desired consistency. Salt and pepper to taste.

Serve over steak, roasts, mashed potatoes, poultry, et cetera. If reheating for later use, heat in a small saucepan with an additional 1/4 c skim milk until smooth.

15 thoughts on “Laundry and Mushroom Gravy

  1. I once overloaded the washer so much that I smelled smoke. I’d like to tell you it was twenty-five years ago, and I was a novice. Alas, I cannot.

  2. Love your laundry story. My son managed to cause the laundry to throw a belt by over filling it. Also, I wondered why, when his clothes came out of the dryer, they all sort of smelled like teenage boy’s socks and fabric softener sheets combined–not a great smell. Anyway, he still hates to do his own laundry, but he can do it and actually end up with clean clothes now.

  3. Laura Ashley!!! My dad totally tried to make my mom and I wear matching Laura Ashley jumpers to church one Sunday (trauma. and I ws only 8 or 9). You just took me back there and I had to laugh.

  4. I had Laura Ashley wallpaper when I was about 13 and then my so called friend had her room done in exactly the sme pattern. I was so deflated from having been so excited 😦 Hey ho. Love the nushroom gravy recipe, very nice indeed!

  5. I am so impressed you are going to med school and still find time to cook, clean and write. You rock! Love your blog. Gonna go check out more (and thanks for stopping on mine)

    1. Don’t worry- my trick is sacrificing sleep in pursuit of good food

  6. OMG lady, I love how you name things, and all your food!

    1. Thank you 🙂 It’s a fun outlet outside of med school.

  7. Love the recipe, we make a similar one here too, it’s a great vegetarian version of gravy, full of flavour and red wine 🙂

  8. mushroom gravy is a beautiful thing! you have a wonderful way of combining stories with your recipes!

  9. Hi there! Would you mind if I share your blog with my myspace group? There’s a lot of people that I think would really appreciate your content. Please let me know. Thanks

  10. yum mushrooms! i’d eat this just by itself 🙂

  11. Love your blog! The humor, and appropriate recipes, are great 🙂 I’ve grabbed the RSS feed.

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