Posts Tagged 'mushroom'

Roasted Mushroom Lettuce Wraps

This is my take on yet another amazing recipe from Plenty.  I roasted the mushrooms instead of marinating them (because even though I don’t consider myself a picky eater at all, I just can’t do raw mushrooms).  I also omitted the fava beans because I really don’t care for them (so maybe I am a little bit of a picky eater?)

I was all set to serve it as you see it above, but then Mike brought out some lettuce and it became abundantly clear that lettuce wraps were the way to go.

A brilliant move on his part.

I went for my first post-marathon run today, and given how shredded my quads felt on Sunday, it was surprisingly enjoyable.  I know this is when I’m most likely to get injured so I’m going to stick to the every other day plan for at least a week or two.  After all, I don’t have any races on the schedule until July, so there’s really no hurry.

Then I came home and Ellie helped me fold laundry.

I seriously had no idea it was possible to love a small human this much.


Spinach and Mushroom Quiche with Vegetable Crust

Yesterday’s run was the best I’ve had yet! I may have broken my casual “no more than 5 miles” rule (barely), but it was beautiful and I felt great. 5.03 miles, 9:43 min/mile Next week I think I’ll bump my long run up to 6 miles, but stick with the every other day plan.

I ran past the finish line of the Nike Women’s Marathon, which they’re setting up right now.

That race was my first marathon back in 2005, when I was far more focused on my social life than training, my longest run was 16 miles, and I swore, after finishing in 4:41, that marathons just weren’t for me.

I’m glad I gave them another chance!

I’ve started a new thing with my meal planning and grocery shopping, where I go to the Farmers Market on Thursday, buy a ton of produce, and then plan my meals around what I’ve bought, instead of planning before I shop. It’s been working out really well for the past few weeks, but sometimes I end up with a ton of random vegetables that I’m not sure what to do with.

Salads are great, obviously.

My current salad obsession involves lettuce, carrots, cucumber, tomatoes, basil, cilantro, and mint, with the best dressing EVER. It’s just tahini, lemon juice, and Bragg’s liquid aminos in about a 3:1:1 ratio (or to taste). I love it so much.

Quiches are also awesome for using up vegetable odds and ends. Especially this one, which has vegetables in the crust too. The crust doesn’t get crispy like a normal pie crust would, but it’s a lot healthier.

I don’t have a quiche pan, so I used a 9″ springform pan. Since they sometimes leak, I put it on a sheet pan to bake.

(adapeted from The Enchanted Broccoli Forest)

3 medium zucchini, shredded (about 2 cups)
1 medium carrot, shredded (about 3/4 cup)
2 small red potatoes, shredded (about 1/2 cup)
1 tsp salt
1/3 cup whole wheat flour
2 tbsp melted butter

1 tbsp butter
1/2 medium yellow onion, diced
8-10 button mushrooms, sliced
6 oz bag baby spinach
salt and pepper
1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese
3 eggs
1 cup milk

Preheat the oven to 375 F.

To make the crust, toss the shredded zucchini with salt and place in a mesh strainer for about 15 minutes. Squeeze to remove extra liquid.

Combine the zucchini, potatoes, and carrots, and stir in the flour and melted butter. Press into a quiche pan or springform pan and bake for about 40 minutes, or until golden.

Remove from the oven to cool while you prepare the quiche.

Heat the butter in a skillet and add the onions and mushrooms. Cook for about 7 minutes over medium, or until the onions are very soft and the mushrooms have browned. Stir in the spinach and a pinch of salt and pepper, and cook just until the spinach wilts.

Sprinkle the parmesan over the crust. Top with the spinach mixture.

Whisk the eggs and milk together and pour over the vegetables and cheese. Set the pan on a rimmed baking sheet and bake for about 40 minutes, or until set.


I love enchiladas, but I think these might be even better. Completely unphotogenic, just like enchiladas, but more fun to say and possibly healthier (at least if you put spinach inside, like I did). There are ENDLESS variations… it would be really easy to make these either vegan or meaty, depending on your preferences.

Lately I’ve been loving living vicariously through bloggers who make beautiful desserts, have awesome jobs, and live in beautiful places. My life lately has been a blur of the gym at 5 AM, a whole day of 13 year olds, and nights of grading labs and tests. I’m happy, it’s just very routine, which is why I’m looking forward to this weekend’s long run much more than usual.

And speaking of being happy, there was a clip on Oprah recently about “America’s Happiest City,” which I guess someone decided was San Luis Obispo, California. I have really mixed feelings about the clip, in which Jenny McCarthy sees about 2 square blocks of town and chats with “happy locals.” (You can watch it here). I lived in San Luis Obispo for 8 years. I went to college, made tons of friends, met my husband, and got married in that town, so of course I have lots of happy memories. But something about the concept of finding the happiest place in America just seems a little ridiculous to me.

I did have a lot of happy times in San Luis Obispo, but I also had a TON of stressful times, and ultimately, I’m realizing now that living here in this nondescript suburb of San Francisco (which will never even make the top 100 for happiest cities in the country, I’m sure) I’m possibly happier than I’ve ever been before. I have a job that I love, lots of great places to run, and I feel like Mike and I are finally moving in the right direction toward our future.

For some reason, San Luis Obispo always felt like a kind of holding pattern. I never found a job that was satisfying, and in a lot of ways the town seemed like an out-of-touch bubble. I think my point, if I can dig one out of this mess of thoughts in my head, is that it shouldn’t matter what the happiest place in the country is. I’m guessing 95% of the country will never be able to afford to live there anyway. I think what matters, as cliche as it may be, is to find your own happiness wherever you are. Even if it’s a foggy suburb you didn’t know existed until you happened upon a job there.

So now that that’s out there, let’s get back to the food. I love this dinner because it’s quick and simple, but feels like comfort food.

There are just a couple steps:
1. Dip corn tortillas in a beans to soften them up.

2. Fill them with a little spinach, mushrooms, and grated cheese.

3. Then roll up and serve with hot sauce. This is our latest discovery from the Mexican grocery store. The lime is key!

(adapted from Herbivoracious)

2 tbsp vegetable oil
1/2 yellow onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups pinto beans, with their liquid (2 15-ounce cans)
water as needed

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 yellow onion, finely diced
4 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt
1 bunch fresh spinach, leaves only (washed well, then drained)
1/2 cup shredded jack cheese

about 10 corn tortillas
cilantro, for garnish

To prepare the beans, heat the oil in a heavy pot or dutch oven over medium. Add the onion and garlic and cook for a few minutes, until softened. Add the beans and cover, then simmer for about 15 minutes.

Puree with an immersion blender, adding water as needed (you’re going for the consistency of gravy or hot fudge sauce). Salt to taste. Turn heat to low.

Heat the oil in a skillet over a medium high. Saute the onion and garlic for 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms, oregano, and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally for 3 minutes. Add the spinach and cook just until it wilts. Taste and adjust seasoning.

Using tongs, dip a tortilla in the beans. Hold it there for about 5-10 seconds, until it has softened but isn’t falling apart. Transfer it to a bowl, fill with about 3 tablespoons of the spinach mixture, sprinkle with a little cheese, then loosely roll up. Repeat for all of the tortillas.

Spoon some of the extra beans over the tortillas, then garnish with cilantro. Serve right away.

Lentil and Mushroom Stroganoff

I love Wednesdays. The fact that it’s a short day at work is probably mostly responsible, but since I got this job, Wednesdays have been pretty great.

It’s not that I don’t love spending time with my students… it’s not that at all. I have some who come to my room and show me Burmese music videos. I have some who serenade me with ukeleles after school. I have one who brings me random bags of popcorn or crackers. I have a few who wrote me letters that I absolutely love reading over and over.

So it’s not that I don’t like my full days of teaching. But my short day means I get to run before it gets dark! Today was a 6.5 mile run with 4 at around Lactate Threshold pace, and I got to do it while it was still light out. Or at least kind of light out, because sadly the fog is back.

Our little week-long “summer” in the middle of November was nice while it lasted!

So the run. It went pretty well but I got an INSANE stomach ache and had to walk for a few minutes. I didn’t stop my watch, so my overall pace was 7:46 per mile with the walk included, which I guess isn’t horrible but I want it to be better!

There’s nothing like a brisk run in the cold fog to get me craving hearty food. I was determined to cook something from Jamie at Home because I borrowed it from a friend a few weeks ago but never cooked any of the recipes.

This was what caught my eye

but for me, lentils are a lot more appealing than venison.

It’s a really simple recipe… you just cook up onions and garlic with mushrooms, then add some lentils and paprika and yogurt to make it creamy. Oh and there’s brandy in it too. By the way, how is it possible that the bottle is this empty? I don’t think I’ve ever used brandy before.

But anyway, it all comes together and is served over rice, making a really filling, healthy dinner with a great earthy flavor. I am glad this recipe makes a ton, because I’m going to be enjoying the leftovers for a few days for lunch!

(adapted from Jamie at Home)

2 cups lentils
2 tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
10 ounces mixed mushrooms, roughly chopped
1 1/2 tbsp paprika
salt and pepper
a small bunch of parsley, stems chopped
2 tbsp brandy
1 cup yogurt (plus more if you want it creamier)

cooked rice, for serving

Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the lentils and cook, covered, for about 25 minutes.

Drain and rinse the lentils and set aside.

Heat the olive oil in a wide skillet over medium high. Add the garlic and onion and cook until soft, about 5 minutes.

Add the mushrooms, paprika, and a few pinches of salt and cook, stirring, another 3-5 minutes, until the mushrooms are browning and soft.

Stir in the lentils, parsley, and brandy and cook, stirring, for a few minutes. Turn the heat down to low and stir in the yogurt, cooking just until heated through. Taste and adjust seasonings, then serve over rice.

Broccoli and Tempeh Stir Fry

Mike and I were talking about my blog the other day and quickly came to the realization that cupcakes bring big hits while things like this do not. However, cupcakes are not exactly what I need to be eating with a 50K race coming up in about 6 weeks. Lots of vegetables and protein? Probably a better choice.

If you’ve been looking for a quick “I just got a flu shot, did a temp run, voted, grocery shopped, and now it’s late and I want fast, healthy dinner NOW,” look no further. This is good stuff and it makes plenty so you should be good to go with leftovers for lunch. It’s a pretty standard stir fry — just mix up a sauce, cook some protein and vegetables, then stir in the sauce and serve over rice — but there are so many times that a standard stir fry hits the spot, and today was one of those days.


1 tbsp water
1 tbsp corn starch
5 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp chili garlic sauce (omit or scale back if you don’t like spicy food)
1 tbsp sesame oil

stir fry
3 tbsp vegetable oil
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 8-ounce packages tempeh, cut into 1″ x 1/2″ rectangles about 1/4″ thick
8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
2 tbsp Shaoxing wine
1 large crown broccoli, cut into bite-sized florets
3 baby bok choy, sliced crosswise

Stir together the sauce ingredients and set aside.

Heat the oil in a large wok or skillet over high heat.

Add the garlic and cook 30 seconds. Add the tempeh and stir gently, cooking for a few minutes (until golden).

Add the mushrooms and stir-fry for about 30 seconds.

Add the Shaoxing, broccoli, and bok choy and stir fry for a few minutes, or until vegetables are crisp-tender. Stir in the sauce and cook just until it thickens.

Serve over rice.

Lemon-Thyme Quinoa and Roasted Vegetable Salad

I spent all day thinking about this dinner. I realize to some people that might be a little obsessive, but I knew I had quinoa and a random assortment of vegetables at home, and I wanted to make something that would use up what I had on hand but not feel like a dumping ground for odds and ends. I wanted it to be well put-together, satisfying, and delicious.

It’s kind of like when you were in middle school and wanted to talk to the boy you liked, so you’d agonize all day over what to say to seem cute and fun, not clingy and desperate. Middle school was so awkward. Anyway…

Roasting the mushrooms, red onion, and zucchini together in a little olive oil with salt and pepper bring out complex flavors in all three, and the lemon and thyme in the dressing bring a bright summer freshness that is hard to beat. With quinoa, the protein-packed super-grain, and some white beans for added protein and fiber, this is an awesome main course dish that will definitely keep you satisfied. For those of you that eat meat, you could always leave out the beans and serve it alongside grilled chicken or shrimp. I’m also thinking that for summer, grilled vegetables would be a seasonally-appropriate stand-in for roasted…whatever works for you!

2 cups vegetable broth
1 cup quinoa

1 large zucchini, cut into 1″ chunks
10-12 large button mushrooms, quartered
1 red onion, cut into wedges
2 tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

1 can (or about 1 1/2 cups cooked) navy or canellini beans, rinsed and drained

juice of 1 large lemon (2-3 tbsp)
1 tsp dried thyme
salt and pepper
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small shallot, finely chopped

Preheat the oven to 400 F.
Toss the zucchini, mushrooms, and onion with olive oil, salt and pepper, and spread on a baking sheet. Bake for about 40 minutes or until all vegetables are tender. Remove and set aside.

While the vegetables are roasting, cook the quinoa. Bring the broth to a boil in a medium saucepan, then add the quinoa. Cover and turn to low, cooking for about 15 minutes or until all liquid has been absorbed. Remove the cover, transfer to a large bowl and fluff with a fork.

Mix together the dressing ingredients (lemon juice, thyme, salt and pepper, olive oil, and shallot) and toss with the quinoa. Add the beans and vegetables, toss a few more times, and serve.

Chiles Rellenos

This dinner was all Mike’s idea, and it’s one of the best meals we’ve had in ages (although I seem to be saying that a lot lately… I have always had a problem with overuse of hyperbole.)

ANYWAY. We’d both been talking about chiles rellenos, and how they’re pretty much the best Mexican food ever. I decided to put them on the menu for the week, and he suggested baking them in muffin tins so they weren’t so fragile (and could be baked, not fried). Of course I thought the idea was brilliant, and it ended up working perfectly. I put corn, mushrooms, and tomatoes inside, topped that with some jack cheese, and covered that with a fluffy egg mixture. HEAVEN. And they’re so cute and convenient!

The only thing you might need to be careful with is the heat factor of the peppers. I used fresh pasillas and half of them were pretty spicy (the other half weren’t at all). I don’t really have any suggestions about how to deal with this issue, I just thought I should give a heads up.

8 fresh pasilla chiles
1 tbsp vegetable oil
8 ounces white mushrooms, sliced
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
kernels cut from 2 ears of fresh corn
1/4 white onion, diced
pinch cinnamon
salt and pepper
16 thin slices of jack cheese
4 egg whites
2 egg yolks

Put the chiles under a hot broiler and cook until the skin is blackened and blistered, turning every few minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cover with a dish towel for 15 minutes or until cool enough to handle.

Scrape off the skin, remove the stem and seeds, and cut each chile in half lengthwise. Press each half chile into a muiffin tin cup and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 375.

Heat the oil in a wide skillet over medium high. Add the onions and cook, stirring, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook another 5 minutes, then stir in the tomatoes, corn, cinnamon, salt, and pepper and cook for about 10 minutes or until the corn is tender.

Set the corn mixture aside to cool slightly. Whip the egg whites until they hold soft peaks. Gently beat the egg yoks, then fold into the whites then spoon into the
Stir half the egg mixture into the corn and mushroom filling.
Spoon the filling into the chile-lined muffin tins, then top with a piece of cheese (torn into pieces to fit, if necessary).

Put a dollop of egg mixture on top of the cheese, then bake for about 15 minutes or until egg is cooked. Carefully remove from muffin tins to serve.

Chickpea, Celery and Mushroom Soup

Although I tend to think New Years Resolutions are a little ridiculous, I pretty much always end up making a few. I’ve had a couple resolutions that I make every year, which I guess defeats the purpose, but that’s life. I’m currently working on one that I’ve made every year since about 2002: cooking more recipes from my cookbook collection (which leads me to this blog post).

I got The Slow Mediterranean Kitchen by Paula Wolfert (who knows Mediterranean food better than just about anyone) as a gift a few years ago but have only made one or two recipes out of it. I love the premise of the book: slow cooking, long marinating, and lengthy braising to maximize the flavors of the ingredients. The recipes don’t have too many steps, but they all take several hours from start to finish (although most of those hours don’t require you to be in the kitchen).

This recipe requires a little advanced planning, because you have to soak the chickpeas and mushrooms overnight, then let them cook for about 6 hours in the slow cooker. That’s followed up by about 30 minutes of cooking on the stove top (when the celery is added) The result is a boldy-flavored bowl of delectably creamy chickpeas in an earthy mushroom broth with the subtle backdrop and crunch of celery. The melting manchego on top rounds out the umami flavor perfectly.

The recipe calls for just half an ounce of dried porcini mushrooms, but I found a 0.88-ounce package of various dried mushrooms at Trader Joes and used that. I was definitely happy to have the extra mushrooms in the soup, so if you have more than half an ounce, don’t be shy about using it!

This makes great leftovers, and to make it a little heartier, you can ladle it over some cooked rice.

adapted from The Slow Mediterranean Kitchen by Paula Wolfert)

2 cups dried chickpeas
1/4 tsp baking soda
pinch sugar
.5-.9 ounces assorted dried mushrooms (porcini, chantrelle, oyster, etc)
3 bay leaves
4 tbsp olive oil, divided
1 medium onion, peeled and finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely minced
3 ribs celery, thinly sliced
salt and freshly ground black pepper
a few ounces of manchego cheese, shaved with a vegetable peeler into curls

The day before you plan to make the soup:
Put the chickpeas, baking soda, and a pinch of salt into a medium bowl and cover with at least two inches of cold water. Soak for about twelve hours.

Put the mushrooms and sugar in a small bowl and pour 1 cup of hot water over them. Cover the bowl and refrigerate for at least twelve hours.

The next morning:
Drain and rinse the chickpeas. Put them in a slow cooker with the onion, bay leaves, 2 tbsp olive oil, and a pinch of salt. Cover with fresh cold water by about an inch. Cook on low for 6-8 hours.

About 30 minutes before you plan to eat the soup:
Drain the mushrooms (reserve the liquid) and chop them well.
Heat the remaining 2 tbsp of olive oil in a soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook for about 1 minute, then add the celery and cook for another two minutes.
Add the mushrooms, their soaking liquid, and the chickpeas and their cooking liquid to the soup pot. Taste and adjust the seasonings (I had to add a few generous pinches of salt), then simmer for about 20 minutes.

To serve:
Ladle soup into bowls and top with a few curls of manchego.

Mushroom Chowder


I’m not a picky eater at all. Off the top of my head, the only thing I really don’t like is raw mushrooms, and you encounter those so infrequently I don’t really think it counts. I’m also starting to be much less inclined to eat meat, but that’s another topic for another day.

So, raw mushrooms. Something about the flavor and texture just makes my stomach turn. I seem to recall a contestant (or judge?) on Top Chef recently declaring that if you don’t cook mushrooms long enough, they just aren’t worth eating, and I completely agree. Because while raw mushrooms are the last thing I want gracing my dinner plate, I could eat cooked mushrooms by the pound.

Shortly after making my favorite vegetable soup, I realized a nice adaptation of the recipe would be this simple mushroom chowder. I’m not sure why I’m calling it a chowder and not cream of mushroom soup, but in any case, it’s full of COOKED mushrooms (which I like so much more than raw) and is nice and creamy and comforting, like a perfect Fall soup should be.

2 tsp butter
1/2 large yellow onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
3 cups sliced assorted mushrooms
1 large or 2 small waxy potatoes, cut into 1 cm cubes
3 cups 2% or whole milk
salt and pepper
chopped fresh parsley

Heat the butter in a soup pot over medium. Add the onion and cook until translucent (3-5 minutes).
Add the garlic and mushrooms, turn the heat to low, and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes. This is when you concentrate all the flavor in the mushrooms, so it’s a crucial step!
Add the potato (up to you whether you leave the peel on or not – I like to leave it on), then the milk, and simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the potatoes are soft.
Season to taste with salt and pepper, then garnish with parsley.


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