I love mushrooms. Really, I do.
And Hubby hates them. He really does.
And the kids are split.
I am working on them.
Mushrooms are a delicacy, I tell them, especially when prepared the right way. My grandfather, a”h, was an outstanding chef and he really knew what to do with a mushroom. Unfortunately, he passed away before I could learn the recipes for his mushroom masterpieces.
Yet the aroma of those dishes linger in my mind. There’s something homey about mushrooms --they are earthy and meaty and gamey and so satisfying, whether grilled, sautéed or stewed. And while you find mushrooms in many different dishes, I favor a special Italian recipe for a fancy dairy meal.
Tonight we are making Creamy Mushroom Risotto with Spinach Walnut Salad. Risotto is an Italian dish made using short-grain rice cooked in broth to a creamy consistency. The stock is added gradually while the rice is stirred constantly. This cooking technique releases the starch in the rice, giving the finished dish a creamy texture. Many risottos include parmesan cheese and butter. So in an effort to keep mine authentic I am using vegetable broth (instead of chicken so we can keep in the dairy) and of course, I am adding mushrooms. My recipe calls for Button, Cremini and Shiitake mushrooms (the kind most commonly found in your local grocery store.)
This a classic Italian mushroom-laden bowl of heaven and my milchig taste buds are dancing already. There is something about a Mushroom Risotto that speaks of comfort and warmth, of curling up by the fireside at the end of a long cold day.
It will be appreciated by those with a finer palette in your household – at least that’s what I tell anyone who doesn’t appreciate my hard work on this dish. The truth is that the palette doesn’t need to be all that refined – even the kiddies will like this creamy rice dish.
Still, I know it’s not Hubby’s favorite meal. He’s a meat & potatoes guy. A girl has to cook something for herself once in a while -- but I’ll be reasonable. Tonight it’s mushrooms and dairy. Tomorrow, we can have sloppy joes for din din or even leftover sausage and pepper rolls from last night. (Both the joes and the sausage recipes are from my new book. Yes, I cook out of my books all the time – they are my recipe boxes!)
Hubby and I disagree on tomatoes and eggplant too. I see another compromise coming.
If mushrooms are like manna from heaven for you, you’ll be thanking G-d for these tasty dishes:
• Baby Spinach and Portobello Mushroom Salad
• Broccoli and Mushroom Pie
• Asian Shiitake Mushroom Soup
• Spinach Mushroom Quiche
• Tomato and Olive Stuffed Portobello Caps
• Marinated Mushrooms