Tag Archives: mushrooms

As I go Out

Savory Mushroom Bread Pudding

Mushroom Bread Pudding

I’m so thrilled to be getting back to Random Recipes, hosted by the awesome Dom.  Random Recipes is a bit different than my other challenges in that it sends me back to my books, some of which can get rather neglected.  This month the challenge was to pull out all our new books and randomly select the book from that group.  I was lucky enough to get four books this year: Indian Slow Cooker, Madhur Jaffrey’s Quick and Easy Indian Cooking, Dining with the Doctor, and The Heart of the Plate – which was the “winning” book!  I used my same random method (Joe picking a number) to select the winning page which led me to a Mushroom Bread Pudding, and wow did I wish for a different page at that point.  The last time I made a bread pudding was Home Ec back in middle school, so it’s been a fair bit of time.  However I had some leftover sourdough bread so with the addition of some fresh peasant bread I at least had the basic ingredients.  I also adjusted the ratio a bit, along with the seasonings, as things didn’t look quite right at first and I was worried about it being a bit bland as written.

Mushroom Bread Pudding

Serves 6-8


1 tbsp olive oil

3 cloves garlic, diced

1 vidalia onion, diced

3 cups mushroom, sliced

1 tbsp marsala wine (or sherry)

1/2 tsp thyme

1 tsp rosemary

1/2 tsp ground pepper

1/4 tsp salt

4 cups cubed bread - I did 2 cups sourdough and 2 cups peasant bread

5 eggs

1/2 cup half&half

1 1/2 cups milk


  1. Heat the oil in a deep skillet over medium heat add the garlic and onion and cook for 7 minutes, then add the mushrooms. Continue cooking for 10 minutes before adding the marsala along with the seasonings. Cook for a final 5 minutes, adjusting seasonings as needed and then remove from heat.
  2. Preheat oven to 425 and lightly grease a 9x11 baking dish. Place the bread cubes in a single layer on the bottom of the pan. Evenly layer the mushroom over the bread.
  3. Beat the eggs and milk together and then pour over the mushroom bread mixture. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the edges start to brown. Remove from oven and sit for 15 minutes - then serve and enjoy!

I’m also sending this over to /52weeksofcooking for their eggs challenge since I rarely, if ever, prepare dishes that feature 5 eggs.   This is the first of their challenges for 2014, and if things go as planned the second one will be up on Wednesday!

Wait for You

Lentil Soup

Lentil Soup

For the record, stomach bugs and food blogs don’t really go hand in hand – however I’m slowly getting back to normal and with that slowly getting back in the kitchen.   When I’m sick, be it stomach flu or otherwise, I tend to go toward simple dishes – mostly because being on my feet for an extended amount of time is bad.  I also tend to use tools such as my slow cooker and dutch oven, since both lend themselves to being set up and walked away from.  This delicious lentil soup is simple, hearty, and easy on the stomach in addition to being adaptable for either slow cooker or dutch oven.

Lentil Soup

Serves 4-5


1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

1 vidalia onion, diced

2 cloves garlic, diced

1/4 tsp cayanne powder

1/2 tbsp oregano

1 tsp rosemary

1 tsp thyme

1 bay leaf

1 1/2 cups baby bella mushrooms, sliced

2 carrots, sliced in to 1/2in thick rounds

1 14.5 oz can of Italian style diced tomatoes, undrained (or 1 1/2 cups fresh tomatoes, skinned and halved)

1/2 cup red lentils, well rinsed

2 cups vegetable stock

2 cups water (add 1/2 cup water if using fresh tomatoes)

1/2 cup dry pasta, ditalini or similar size


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 7 minutes before adding the dry spices. Cook for an additional minute, stirring constantly to prevent burning.
  2. Add the mushrooms along with the carrots and cook for 5 minutes, allowing the carrots to slightly soften. Add the tomatoes, lentils, stock, and water and bring to a quick boil. Cover and allow to simmer for at least 30 minutes.
  3. Remove cover, stir, and add the dry pasta. Bring to a boil and add more water/stock if needed. Boil for 5 minutes or until pasta is al dente. Serve hot and enjoy!

Since I had spent more than a fair amount of the day in bed, I went for the dutch oven this time around.  For a slow cooker, precook the onions then add everything else and cook on low for 6 hours or high for 2.   If cooking on low, turn to high for 30 minutes before serving in order to ensure the pasta has cooked thru – adding more liquid at this point if needed.

It’s Wonderful

Vegetable Fideua


When I saw that /52weeksofcooking was heading to Spain for their weekly challenge, I knew I would have a hard time picking one recipe.  I toyed with the idea of making a vegetarian paella, but in the end decided to go with that similar yet slightly less well know (at least to me) dish known as Fideua.  Many sites refer to this as “pasta paella” instead of rice, which made the Italian in me very happy.  As with paella, this is normally not a vegetarian friendly dish but it is one that can be converted over rather easily!  I decided to use chickpeas as the protein, along with a variety of mushrooms, but soy chorizo or tofurkey would also work.

Vegetable Fideoa

Serves 4-5


1/2 lb thin pasta, broken in to 2 inch pieces

2 tbsp olive oil

1 white onion, diced

3 cloves garlic, diced

1 green pepper, diced

1 tsp thyme

1 tsp rosemary

1 tsp oregano

1 lb wild mushrooms, sliced thin

1 bay leaf

1/4 tsp smoked paprika

14.5 oz can italian style diced tomatoes

2 cups vegetable stock

1 cup water

2 cups pre-soaked chickpeas


  1. Preheat oven to broil setting. Lay the pasta flat on an edged cookie sheet or roasting pan. Cook under broiler until pasta is slightly brown, set aside and turn off the oven.
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large saute pan or wok over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion, cooking for 5 minutes and then add the pepper. Cook for an additional 5 minutes before adding the thyme, rosemary, and oregano. Cook for one minute, stirring constantly.
  3. Add the mushrooms and cook for 7 minutes, then add the precooked pasta along with the bay leaf, paprika, tomatoes, vegetable stock, and water. Bring to a quick boil and then turn heat to medium low and allow to simmer for 20 minutes, stirring once at the halfway point.
  4. Serve and enjoy!

 This dish requires a bit of attention at first, but once the pasta is added there is plenty of time to enjoy some wine – or let the dogs out!  I enjoyed mine naked while Joey topped his with some fresh Parmesan cheese

Home is Wherever

Cabbage & Polenta

Cabbage and Polenta

Kitchen is set up, unpacked, and finally usable – and with that the first recipe from our new place in Baltimore!  While it took a fair bit of time to get to this point, it feels like things are finally get back on track with new routines and ways to do things.   With that I have been cooking in our new place but I’ve been relying on old favorites, things that I could easily put together while also working on the million other projects going on.   This recipe falls in to the category of old favorite, as I grew up eating it, but it took a bit of time to figure out how to make this vegetarian.  Cabbage and polenta was a family tradition, we knew that if my Grandma was visiting we would have this filling dish at least once.  I attempted to make it a few months ago ala veggie but the resulting taste just wasn’t the one I remembered.  I debated using a meat substitute but in the end I decided to stick with the vegetables and adjust the seasonings.

Home is Wherever

Serves 5-6


2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil

3 cloves garlic, chopped

1 sweet onion, diced

1 tsp dried thyme

1 tsp dried oregano

1/2 tsp dried rosemary

1 1/2 cups baby bella mushroom, quartered

3 carrots, cut into thin round slices

1 head green cabbage ( around 1 1/2 lbs), chopped

1 14.5 oz can stewed tomatoes

2 cups low sodium vegetable stock, divided

1 bay leaf

salt and pepper to taste


  1. Heat the olive oil in a large and deep skillet over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 7 minutes, allowing to garlic to turn golden. Add the dried spiced, then stir well and cook for a minute before adding the mushrooms.
  2. Cook for 7-10 minutes, mushrooms should be soft and onion golden, before adding the carrots and cooking for an additional 5 minutes. Stir frequently to prevent the spices from burning.
  3. Add the cabbage along with the stewed tomatoes, bay leaf, and 1 cup of the vegetable stock. Bring to a quick boil, then cover and turn heat to low. Simmer for 30 minutes, adding more stock as needed. Remove lid, stir, and take a quick taste to see if seasonings need adjusted, adding salt & pepper as needed.
  4. Serve hot over the baked polenta.


Thick egg noodles can also be used in place of the polenta


Growing up my Grandma would have made the polenta on the stove top, but I went for baked polenta in order to save time and energy.  I also added 1/2 tbsp of dried oregano to the recipe to give an extra kick – which worked perfectly!

Just Bent

Vegan Sushi

Vegan Sushi | Two Ways

When one is a vegetarian blogger seafood challenges require thinking a little outside the box.  After all what most people picture when they hear seafood is NOT vegetarian and while at one point I did include those recipes I don’t really make that anymore.   So with /r/52weeksofcooking’s seafood challenge I really had two options: fake seafood or using a sea-based vegetable.  I debated recreating Richard Blais’s banana scallops but while those are really outside the box they aren’t exactly challenging so I decided to keep looking.   Then while reading a Washington Post article I saw a recipe for vegan sushi and instantly latched on to giving sushi a try.   I liked the idea of using mushrooms for one of the fillings, which is what WP had listed, but switching the suggested citrus soy sauce for a sesame ginger sauce.  For the other filling I decided to use sweet potatoes, which are right there with eggplant on my must have in kitchen at all times list.  I decided to make a garlic ginger soy sauce for the sweet potatoes which resulted in a very crowded stove top.

Mushrooms with Sesame Ginger Sauce


1 tbsp vegetable oil

1/2 lb shitake mushrooms

1 tsp ginger, shredded

1/2 tbsp sesame sauce

1/2 tsp sesame seeds


  1. Cut the mushrooms into matchstick size pieces. Set aside.
  2. Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a shallow saute pan. Add the ginger and cook for 2 minutes allowing it to slightly brown. Add the mushrooms then turn the heat down. Cook for 5-7 minutes stirring occasionally to prevent sticking/burning. Add the sesame sauce, stir well and cook for a final 2 minutes. Toss with the sesame seeds and set aside to slightly cool.
  3. Roll the sushi (see link below recipes) and enjoy!

Garlic Ginger Sweet Potatoes


1 tbsp vegetable oil

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 shallots, diced

1 tsp garlic, shredded

1 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut in to matchsticks

1/2 tbsp soy sauce


  1. Heat the vegetable oil in a large saute pan over medium high heat. Add the garlic, shallots, and ginger and cook for 3 minutes, allowing everything to turn slightly golden. Add the sweet potatoes then cover and cook for 5-7 minutes stirring once to prevent burning but allowing the sweet potatoes to get a slight crust on them. Stir in the soy sauce then cover and turn heat to low.
  2. Cook for a final 3 minutes then set aside to slightly cool.
  3. Roll the sushi (see link below recipes) and enjoy!

I did cheat a little in using Alton Brown’s sushi rice recipe, figuring I had enough work figuring out the right sauce to vegetable ratio.  For rolling the sushi I watched a few videos to get the idea and used plastic wrap to make up for my lack of a mat. I served the sushi with some siracha sauce since fresh wasabi is not an easy to locate ingredient at my local market, and also skipped the soy sauce.  I was surprised in how easy these were to roll, even without a bamboo mat!