Gourmet Veggie Mama

Tag Archives: Mushrooms

Pasta with Mushroom and Sun-Dried Tomato Cream Sauce

So. I have to tell you. This blogging thing — if you don’t make a schedule and stick to it, you tend to go a month in between posts without even noticing it.

Mea culpa. If you want excuses, I’ve got ’em. Work. Kids. The baby crawls and pulls up and cruises and is into everything now! A child-who-shall-not-be-named has done something with my camera’s memory card and I cannot for the life of me find it.* But, for the most part, it’s just that I only have 8 hours a week of nanny time, which means I work during every other free moment, including my former blogging time. Sigh.

* I suspect there is a black hole in our house somewhere. Don’t worry, I sucked it up and bought a new one, but I’m still holding out hope!

sundried tomato and mushroom pasta

But I miss writing, and I miss you guys, and I find myself composing posts in my head that I never actually commit to paper (screen?). So here I am. And I’m going to try to do better — with a schedule and everything. In fact, it was around this time three years ago** that I really launched my blog by doing a 30-day post challenge. I am contemplating doing the same thing again to throw myself back into it, and get back into the habit of coming here and giving this blog the attention it deserves — especially now that we’ve joined a new CSA and I’m cooking regularly again.

** Damn, time flies, doesn’t it? Also, do you like how I used three big writing no-nos all in a row there — starting sentences consecutively with “but,” “so” and “and.” Win!

To the matter at hand, though — pasta! My kids love pasta. Love.

pasta kids

I have never seen a baby nosh as pleasurably (or as heartily!) as Amelia did the other night on spaghetti at an Italian restaurant. That was the stuff. Even my picky 3-year-old*** hardly every turns her nose up at pasta… though she may pick out any “green stuff” I put in it.

*** Remember how she used to eat everything I put in front of her? Me too. 

I ran across a recipe somewhere for pasta with sun-dried tomato cream sauce a while back. I apparently didn’t save it anywhere, since I still haven’t been able to find it again, but I did remember that it called for non-oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes of good quality, and some happened to jump out of the shelf at me while I was at Whole Foods the very next day.

Those tomatoes languished in my pantry, since I hadn’t saved the recipe, and then we got a brown paper bag of locally cultivated mushrooms in our weekly Farmhouse Delivery box. In brainstorming ideas for the mushrooms, my mind wandered back to that sun-dried tomato pasta — and this delicious, umami-rich dinner was born.

sundried tomato and mushroom pasta

I mean — sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, cream sauce, pasta — how can you go wrong? Even my mushroom-hating hubby loved it. Plus, it’s super-easy to prepare, and ready in minutes. Now that’s my idea of a great weeknight meal! Add a salad (which certain members of your family may or may not eat) and call it dinner.

Pasta with Mushroom and Sun-Dried Tomato Cream Sauce
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4-6
  • 8 oz casarecce or other short pasta (like rotini or shells)
  • 4 oz sun-dried tomatoes (not oil-packed)
  • 6 oz mushrooms
  • 2 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • 2 cups vegetable stock
  • 1 cup cream
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese, plus additional for serving
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Put a large pot of salted water on to boil, and cook the pasta until al dente.
  2. Meanwhile, chop the sun-dried tomatoes roughly and put them in a small bowl with water to soak. Chop the mushrooms, slicing ¼ of them, and chopping the rest roughly.
  3. Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium high heat. Drain the sun-dried tomatoes and saute them with the mushrooms until the mushrooms release their juices and begin to brown slightly.
  4. Sprinkle the flour over and stir to coat. Add the vegetable stock and cream and lower the heat to medium. Simmer, stirring, until the sauce thickens slightly (enough to coat the back of a spoon).
  5. Drain the pasta when done, and add it to the skillet with the sauce, stirring to coat.
  6. Remove from the heat and add the parmesan, stirring until incorporated. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve with additional parmesan, if desired.


Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes

I am starting to love twice-baked potatoes. Not the smallest reason is that they are easy to make ahead and then finish off right before dinner time. When I saw Kitchen Treaty’s recipe for Greek yogurt and chive twice-baked potatoes, I wanted to try them ASAP, and then I stumbled on a baked potato casserole recipe on Pinterest, and the rest is history. I made my very own Frankenstein version combining these dishes, and it was perfect.

Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes

The Greek yogurt, aside from adding creaminess to the filling, also packs a protein punch, and it’s tasty to boot. Add some sharp cheddar (I used Dubliner cheese leftover from my last twice-baked potato adventure, but any good sharp cheese will do), sautéed mushrooms and onions, and broccoli, and we’re in business. I would love to say that I served this as a put-together meal with a side salad or some roasted kale, but, alas, it was a busy night, and the fact that the potatoes already had veggies in the filling won out, and I just called it a complete meal in itself.

4.5 from 2 reviews
Loaded Twice-Baked Potatoes
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4
  • 4 baking potatoes
  • 3 Tbsp butter, divided
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil, plus additional for oiling pan
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
  • ½ cup mushrooms, chopped
  • 1 cup broccoli florets, chopped
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1½ cups sharp cheddar, divided
  • salt and pepper to taste
  1. Preheat the oven to 400°. Lightly oil a large casserole dish, cut the potatoes in half lengthwise, and arrange then cut-side down in the dish. Bake for 15 minutes.
  2. Flip the potatoes, pierce them with a fork and bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes, or until soft. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool. Lower the oven temperature to 350°.
  3. While the potatoes are cooking, caramelize the onion. In a large sauté pan, melt 1 Tbsp butter and 1 Tbsp olive oil and cook the onion over medium heat for until soft and translucent. Lower the heat and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until golden brown.
  4. Return the heat to medium and add the garlic and mushrooms. Sauté for another 3 to 4 minutes. Add the broccoli and saute for a minute or two more.
  5. Once the potatoes are cool enough to handle, scoop most of the flesh out, leaving about ¼ inch so that the potato skin holds its shape, and place the insides in a large bowl. Add the remaining 2 Tbsp butter and the Greek yogurt and mash well.
  6. Stir in 1 cup of the cheddar and the onion-mushroom-broccoli mixture and mix well. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  7. Scoop the potato mixture back into the potato skins, mounding over. Sprinkle with the remaining cheddar and arrange the potatoes in the same casserole dish.*
  8. Bake for an additional 10 to 15 minutes, or until heated through and the cheese is melted and starting to brown. Serve warm.
* If you want to make these ahead and finish baking them right before dinner, stop here and refrigerate the potatoes. Simply add about 5 minutes to the cooking time.


Leftover Extravaganza

“Tis the season. You know, the season of lots and lots of leftovers. Do you have them? At this point, they are just hanging out in the fridge, begging to be used ASAP or tossed. Here are a few tasty ideas that will hopefully help keep you from feeding a post-feast feast to your compost pile.

  • Sweet potato waffles. We added a nice hefty scoop of leftover sweet potato casserole (topping and all) to our favorite waffle batter.
    sweet potato waffles

    Breakfast time!

    Not only were they excellent,  the leftover waffles freeze well so that you have quick breakfast for mornings to come!

  • Bon Appétit’s Thanksgiving leftovers slideshow has a bunch of excellent-sounding recipes, including pumpkin flan (a great use for that partial can of pumpkin you have in the fridge).
  • Brussels sprouts pizza. Yeah, seriously. We had this for dinner the other night and it was so good. We already had some leftover grilled pizza crusts in the freezer, so it was quick and easy to throw together (the hubby finished them off on the grill).
    brussels sprouts pizza

    Eat your veggies!

    My vegetarian version included halved roasted Brussels sprouts, mozzarella and manchego cheeses, sautéed spinach and a sprinkle of fleur de sel and crushed red pepper. The hubby’s version included Brussels sprouts, bacon and mozzarella. Both were delicious (or at least so I hear).

  • Cranberry brie bites. I stumbled across these on Rufus’ Guide to Food and Spirits, and I must have them now. What an awesome use of leftover cranberry sauce (which is plentiful in my fridge right now).
  • Mashed potato cakes. Obvs. I wrote about this one yesterday, and it was tasty.
  • Stuffing stuffed mushrooms? Yes please!
  • Last but not least, here are a bunch of ideas for all that leftover turkey from Mel’s Kitchen Cafe and A is for Austin.

Our Thanksgiving Table… and a Giveaway (CLOSED)!

We have just finished a terrible round of the pukies here at our house. Thankfully Nora seems to have skipped the worst of it (fingers crossed), but being sick with a toddler is no fun. Even less fun is being sick with a toddler when your spouse and co-parent is also sick. But, the worst is over now, so onward and upward. It’s time to sanitize the kitchen and start thinking about Thanksgiving!

Here’s what will be on our table this year:

  • Turkey – I defer to my omnivore guests on the centerpiece of the meal. Hubby is in charge of the turkey business this year (as always), and he decided to order a smoked turkey breast from Rudy’s.
  • Green Beans with Creamy Mushrooms – I tested this recipe last week, and it was far too delicious not to make again. It’s like green bean casserole without all the processed junk!
  • Bourbon Sweet Potato Casserole – This is another of my “dress rehearsal” recipes, and although I planned to revert to my traditional sweet potatoes with honey, pecans and cinnamon, I have been outvoted. That’s okay — it’s good stuff, man.
  • Stuffing – TBD. I think I’ll make cornbread stuffing with pecans and jalapeños. Stuffing (or dressing, as my mother would implore me to call it) is not really my thing, but I think it’s required.
  • Cream Cheese Mashed Potatoes – Love. These. Potatoes. I think I have a new go-to recipe… but for holidays only, since I’m sure they are terrrrrrible for you.
  • Roasted Beets with Goat Cheese and Pine Nuts – This is a new recipe, but it’s similar to several others I make, so it should be a snap. Plus I have beets and goat cheese, so why not?
  • Spiced Cranberry Sauce – Fresh is so much better, people. Are you still using the canned stuff? Please tell me no. If you want a processed sugar-free version, use the recipe at the link, but substitute coconut palm sugar for the brown sugar. Done and done.
  • Bourbon Chocolate Pecan Pie – You knew this was going to make the cut again, didn’t you? I’m pretty sure we’ll never have another Thanksgiving without it.
  • Bread Pudding – I seize on any excuse to make a good bread pudding, and Thanksgiving certainly is one! I’m not sure yet if I’ll be making White and Dark Chocolate Bread Pudding or another variation (maybe chocolate bread pudding with walnuts?), but it’s happening.

In general, I like to overdo it, but this year, just coming off of feeling like death for a few days, I got responsible and pared back a bit. What’s on your Thanksgiving table this year? Are you trying anything new, or sticking with the tried-and-true?


Now, for what you’re all really interested in: the giveaway! I’ve never done one before, but when Cooking Planit gave me the opportunity to offer you one of my favorite kitchen gadgets on their dime, it sounded like a win-win to me. Just in time to help with all your holiday cooking this year, how about a Cuisinart Mini-Prep Food Processor?

Hello, beautiful.

Not only is it lovely, it does a bang-up job with small tasks like making dressing, chopping onions and more. All you have to do to win is visit Cooking Planit and let me know which of their featured “Alternative Thanksgiving” meals looks yummiest to you! Check out the Rafflecopter for more details and ways to get more entries.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Happy hunting (errr… you know). Good luck with your Thanksgiving prep, and have a wonderful holiday!

P.S. You have to comment letting me know your answer for the first two entries. Anyone who doesn’t will be disqualified!


The family that cooks together…

“We need a bigger kitchen.”

Those words actually came out of the hubby’s mouth, albeit in a joking manner, while we were making enchiladas last weekend. Our kitchen’s size wasn’t really the problem. The problem is that, while we used to cook together on a fairly regular basis, that just hasn’t been the case lately.

Since I transitioned out of working and into the role of primary chef (among other things), I cook most of the meals, except on the nights we grill, or nights when I have something planned out of the house. The hubby is a good sport in his role as primary dish-doer. However, we both do enjoy cooking (sometimes), and when you’re making an elaborate meal, things always go faster with two in the kitchen. Well, once you get that delicate dance down to an art, anyway.

We found a nice balance by dividing up the duties (I made enchilada sauce while he made the filling and rolled the enchiladas) and trying to stay out of each other’s way as much as possible, but there is still work to be done. I, for one, will readily acknowledge that I need to reign in my control freak tendencies.

So, if you cook with your partner, what are your tips for keeping the harmony in the kitchen? How do you avoid bossing each other around or stepping on each other’s toes (literally and figuratively)?

Just to show I’m a good sport here, I’m including a recipe for the enchiladas we made. They were delicious!

Yes, please.

Cook ’em with someone you love.

Chard and Mushroom Enchiladas with Hatch Green Chile Sauce

For enchiladas:
2 Tbsp canola oil, plus more for softening tortillas
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
1 onion, chopped
4 cups chard or other tender greens, coarse stems removed and coarsely chopped
8 oz cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp flour
1/2 cup milk
1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated, plus more for topping
6-8 corn tortillas

For sauce:
12 Hatch green chiles, roasted, peeled, stemmed and seeded
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed
2 Tbs canola oil

First, make the sauce. Place the chiles in a pan and cover with water. Simmer for about 30 minutes, then cool slightly. Blend the mixture in a blender or food processor until smooth. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a pan and sauté the onion and garlic. Add the chile puree and salt to taste.

Preheat the oven to 375°. Heat 2 Tbsp canola oil in a large skillet and sauté the garlic and onion until soft and golden. Add the mushrooms and the chard by batches and stir until cooked down.

In a small saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat, and stir in the flour. Cook for a couple of minutes, or until golden, and then gradually add the milk, stirring to incorporate. Simmer over medium heat until slightly thickened. Turn off the heat and stir in the cheese. Stir the cheese mixture into the cooked greens and mushrooms.

Fill the bottom of a small skillet with a generous amount of canola oil (1/4-1/2 inch deep) and heat over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot and shimmering, carefully add the first tortilla with tongs. Fry briefly, just to soften, and then remove to a plate covered with paper towels to drain. When cool enough to handle (but still warm), fill the center of the tortilla with the greens mixture, roll, and place in a lightly oiled enchilada pan. Repeat with the other tortillas.

Pour the sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle with the remaining cheddar. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until hot and bubbly.

Garlicky mushrooms and kale

Not too long ago, I stumbled on a list of great kale recipes. I’ve been cooking my way through them, since we’ve been getting a lot of kale through our CSA,* but I have to say, this is my favorite one so far, and probably my favorite use of kale… well, ever.

* Plus I am a confirmed kale addict. Seriously. Love the stuff.

Although the original recipe would make a good side dish, I wanted to make it a meal, so I latched on to both of the review’s suggestions and served it on a bed of polenta and topped it with a poached egg. It was FAB-U-LOUS.

Garlicky, creamy goodness.

I can’t rave enough about this. Granted, my addition of eggs, milk, and cheese is unkind to this dish’s vegan roots, but I couldn’t help it. Just the combination of the creamy polenta, the deep garlicky flavor of the mushrooms, the slight crunch of the kale, and the perfectly poached egg over the top of it — oh my. Try this one out and you won’t be disappointed.

Garlicky Mushrooms and Kale with Creamy Polenta and Poached Eggs
Based on this recipe from Appetite for Reduction by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

1 Tbs olive oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp salt
2 cups cremini mushrooms, sliced
1 large bunch kale, coarse stems removed, leaves sliced or torn into pieces
2 eggs

For polenta:
3 1/2 cups water
1 cup yellow cornmeal or polenta
1/2 cup grated parmesan
1/2 cup milk
4 Tbs unsalted butter

Heat the oil and garlic over medium heat in a large skillet or sauté pan, stirring. Once the garlic begins to crackle, add the mushrooms and salt. Let them cook for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring often, until the moisture has released and the mushrooms are lightly browned.

Meanwhile, bring a large, deep pot of water to boil for the eggs,** and make the polenta. Bring 3 1/2 cups of water to boil in a medium saucepan. Salt the water generously and then gradually stir in the cornmeal. Reduce the heat to low and cook for about 15 minutes, stirring often. Remove from the heat and stir in the butter, cheese, and milk. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Add the kale to the saute pan with the garlic and mushrooms, and cook, stirring, for about 10 more minutes. Add splashes of water if the pan seems dry. The kale should be crisp-tender and cooked down pretty well.

Meanwhile, poach the eggs. Salt the boiling water and turn the heat down until just simmering. Crack the eggs into individual ramekins and carefully slide them one by one into the pot. Simmer for 2 minutes, and then remove with a slotted spoon to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking.

Serve the kale and mushrooms on the bed of polenta, and top each serving with a poached egg.

** The deeper the pot, the better, since the eggs will retain their shape better. You’ll need at least 6 inches.

Spinach and mushroom enchiladas

I was perusing one of my favorite cookbooks (Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone) for menu ideas, and I happened on a recipe for mushroom enchiladas. Given the hubby’s newfound receptivity to mushroom-centric cuisine, and our lack of CSA veggies at the time, I decided to pencil it in.

Our first CSA delivery came last Friday, and the box contained a beautiful bunch of spinach, along with a couple of other types of greens (which I am currently holding in reserve for other projects). So, I thought, why not spinach and mushroom enchiladas?

Good call.

I didn’t even end up glancing at the original recipe I had chosen, so this recipe is truly winging it. I also used *gasp* packaged enchilada sauce. Normally I would pull some of my own hatch green chile sauce out of the freezer, but that wasn’t an option this time. So, Frontera it was, and I was actually really impressed.

Good stuff.

The hubby couldn’t believe it wasn’t freshly made sauce. I’d highly recommend it if you’re pressed for time.

Spinach and Mushroom Enchiladas

1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
10 oz brown mushrooms, roughly chopped
1 bunch spinach, stemmed and roughly chopped.
2 Tbs olive oil
6 corn tortillas
canola oil for frying
1 cup grated Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
enchilada sauce of your choice

Preheat the oven to 350. Saute the onion and garlic in the olive oil until they begin to soften. Add the mushrooms and stir until they begin to release their juices. Add the spinach and stir until wilted. Remove from heat and cool, and then drain and press out any extra moisture.* Stir in 1/4 cup of the cheese.

Fill the bottom of a small skillet with a generous amount of canola oil (1/4-1/2 inch deep) and heat over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot and shimmering, carefully add the first tortilla with tongs. Fry briefly, just to soften, and then remove to a plate covered with paper towels to drain. When cool enough to handle (but still warm), fill the center of the tortilla with the mushroom and spinach mixture, roll, and place in a lightly oiled enchilada pan. Repeat with the other tortillas.

Pour the sauce over the enchiladas and sprinkle with the remaining cheese. Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until hot and bubbly. Serve with sour cream.

* No need to go crazy here. You just want to make sure the mixture doesn’t make the tortillas soggy. I drained mine over the sink and used a couple of paper towels to blot a bit.

Veggie pockets with mushrooms, greens, and caramelized onions

One of my favorite ways to use up a bunch of random veggies (especially greens) is to make veggie pockets. I use puff pastry sheets for outside, which makes it quick and simple, and if you prepare the “stuffings” ahead, it makes for a pretty easy dinner.

Not too long ago, I ended up with a glut of greens and some mushrooms begging to be used, and caramelized onion makes everything better, so I pulled some puff pastry out of the freezer and got to work.

Flaky, buttery goodness.

The flavors melded really well, and since I sauteed all the veggies in the same pan, just wiping out in between, the cleanup was minimal. Gotta love that! I had leftovers of each topping, so we saved them for an easy meal of grilled pizzas a couple of nights later. The pockets made a great meal served with a simple side salad.

Dinner time!

You can make these with whatever combination of veggies and cheeses you like, but here’s the basic recipe. Enjoy!

Veggie Pockets with Mushrooms, Greens, and Caramelized Onions

1 package frozen puff pastry (2 sheets),* thawed
1 onion, peeled, halved, and thinly sliced
1 Tbs butter
1 large or 2 small bunches of greens**
1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
sliced crimini mushrooms
shredded mozzarella and parmesan
olive oil for sautéing
one egg, beaten

Lay the puff pastry out to thaw while you work on the fillings. Preheat the oven to 400°. Heat the butter and about a Tbs of olive oil in a large saute pan over medium heat and add the sliced onions. Cook, stirring, until translucent, and then turn the heat down to low and cook slowly, stirring occasionally, until soft and caramelized. Set aside.

Wash and trim the greens as necessary, making sure to remove any tough stems. Wipe out the pan and heat another Tbs of olive oil over medium high heat. Throw in the garlic and stir around for a minute or so. Add the greens in batches, stirring until they’re reduced enough to add another couple of handfuls. Once all of the greens are a bit wilted, add a splash of water or veggie broth, cover, and reduce the heat to medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the greens are tender. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Drain and cool slightly. Remove to a cutting board and chop finely.

Wipe out the pan again and add another Tbs or so of olive oil. Saute the mushrooms over medium heat until they start to give off their juices and are a little browned.

Lay each sheet of puff pastry out on a floured surface and cut diagonally into 2 pieces.*** Heap a portion of the cooked greens into half of each triangle, making sure to leave room at the edges to fold the pastry over and seal it. Top the greens with a handful of mushrooms, a generous dollop of caramelized onions, a handful of mozzarella, and a sprinkling of parmesan cheese. Fold the puff pastry over the filling (so that it makes a smaller triangle) and brush the edges with egg and press together. Press firmly around the edges with the tines of a fork to seal. Brush the top of each pocket with egg and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown.

* Standard Pepperidge Farm puff pastry (which is widely available) comes in a 17.3-oz package with two sheets. My new favorite brand, Dufour, comes in a 14-oz package with one sheet. I just cut it in half crosswise to start with. Problem solved.

** I’ve tried chard, kale, mustard greens, and a mix. Any cooking greens should work well here.

*** You will only need both sheets if you are making 4 pockets. They do refrigerate or freeze well (reheat in a toaster oven), but you can also halve the recipe and use the extra veggies as toppings for pizza, like we did!

White beans with mushrooms, spinach, and quinoa

A few weeks ago, I got one of those grow-your-own mushroom kits from Whole Foods. After following the directions, misting the baby mushrooms twice a day to keep them moist, and waiting patiently for a couple of weeks, all of a sudden the box exploded with oyster mushrooms. Score!

Home grown.

After looking around for the best way to use my delicious home-grown fungi, I decided to go with a simple dish of white beans, spinach, and quinoa.

Good stuff.

It was tasty, nutritious, and made a great meal for the adults and kiddo alike. The recipe made a ton, so I froze some of it in individual portions. Yay for having some leftovers for a rainy day!

White Bean Soup with Mushrooms, Quinoa, and Spinach
Original recipe from allrecipes.com via Mariquita Farms, with my modifications

1 lb dry cannellini beans
2 Tbs olive oil, divided
1/3 lb oyster mushrooms, stemmed and sliced
1 onion, halved and finely sliced
1/2 cup dry white wine
2 tsp freshly chopped rosemary
1/2 cup quinoa
10 oz washed fresh spinach, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
parmesan cheese for serving

Place the beans into a large container and cover with several inches of cool water; let stand 8 hours to overnight. Drain and rinse the beans before using.

Heat 1 Tbs of the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Stir in the mushrooms, and cook until they soften and begin to give up their juices, about 4 minutes. Remove the mushrooms from the pot, and set aside. Heat the remaining 1 Tbs of olive oil in the pot, and stir in the onions. Cook, stirring, until caramelized to a dark brown, about 15 minutes.

Pour in the wine and rosemary, and bring to a boil over high heat. Once boiling, add the drained beans and enough water to cover by 1 inch. Return to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.

Stir in the cooked mushrooms and quinoa. Continue cooking until the beans and the quinoa are tender, about 20 minutes more. Remove from the heat, and stir in the spinach leaves until wilted. Season to taste with salt and pepper before serving, and finish with a sprinkle of parmesan.

Shiitake bok choy soup

I’m always on the lookout for a quick, easy meal that doesn’t sacrifice taste. While searching for a new way to use bok choy,* I ran across a recipe that killed two birds with one stone! This shiitake bok choy soup is easy, tasty, and it took 10 minutes to put together, tops, said the hubby, who served as my recipe tester.

* Hey, stir fry is good, but I don’t necessarily want it every week.


I had already rehydrated and chopped the mushrooms earlier in the day, and by the time I was ready to head out for an evening run, all that was left to do was chop the bok choy and scallions and put it all together. Fortunately for me, and thanks to my awesome hubby, when I got home, I had a sleeping baby in her crib, and dinner already on the table!

Shiitake Bok Choy Soup
Based on this recipe, originally from Gourmet, February 1999

1 oz. dried shiitake mushrooms**
1 bunch bok choy
4 scallions
5 1/2 cups (approximately) vegetable broth
Japanese rice seasoning (optional)
12 oz soba noodles***
soy sauce

Bring 1 cup of water to a boil and add the mushrooms. Turn the heat down and simmer, covered, for about 20 minutes. Drain, reserving the liquid. Allow the mushrooms to cool and then slice them. Cut the bok choy crosswise into 1/4-inch thick slices. Cut the scallions diagonally into thin slices.

Add enough vegetable broth to the mushroom liquid to make 6 cups total. Add rice seasoning to taste (if using) and bring the mixture to a boil in a large pot. Add the bok choy, mushrooms, and noodles. Simmer the soup, uncovered, until the noodles are tender. Season with soy sauce and stir in scallions.

** I used dried shiitakes, since I wasn’t in the mood to pay a lot more for fresh, but you could substitute 1/2 lb fresh and omit the reconstitution.

*** I used Annie Chun’s FreshPak noodles, which are already cooked.

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