>> Monday, November 10, 2008
I have a love affair with stuffed mushrooms. There's just something about the earthy flavor of a mushroom paired with a delicious stuffing. I have one recipe that I turn to whenever I'm in the mood for stuffed mushrooms. I've had this recipe for about a decade now, and I never tire of it.
Before we get to the recipe, you know I've got to talk a little about mushrooms. Mushrooms are a type of fungus and are surprisingly chocked full of good stuff. Crimini mushrooms, the kind I like to use in the recipe below, are considered an excellent source of selenium, riboflavin, copper, niacin, vitamin B5, potassium and phosphorus. On top of that, it's considered a very good source of zinc, manganese, thiamin, and vitamin B6. Wow!
Let's take a closer look at two of the minerals that are so prevalent in mushrooms. First, selenium. Selenium is a trace mineral that acts as an antioxidant in the body. So, it's thought to help keep the level of free radicals in your body low - that's a good thing. Selenium also helps the body to synthesize antibodies and to transport ions across cell membranes. Our bodies need very little selenium to function properly, and selenium deficiency is rare.
Zinc is needed for a body's immune system to work properly. It plays a part in cell growth and division and also in wound healing. It's also vital for the senses of smell and taste. Zinc is a cofactor for over 100 enzymes in the body and is essential for protein synthesis, DNA and RNA maintenance, bone mineralization, thyroid function, blood clotting, and cognitive functions. While zinc deficiency is rare, because a main source of zinc is from meat, it is a concern for vegetarians. In that respect, mushrooms can be a much needed source of zinc for a vegetarian diet.
On to the recipe! I originally found this recipe in Martha Stewart's magazine. It is much the same as the original recipe with just a few small tweaks. Hope you enjoy!
Mushrooms with Goat Cheese Stuffing
3 slices bread (white or wheat - both work well)
4 green onions, white and green parts roughly chopped
1 red bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
4 oz fresh goat cheese
1/4 cup finely chopped cilantro leaves (optional)
1 oz Monterey Jack cheese, finely grated
1 tsp salt
about 1 1/2 lbs of mushrooms, stems removed and caps cleaned
Pulse bread in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl. Place the green onions, red bell pepper, and goat cheese in the bowl of the food processor, and pulse until finely chopped and well combined. Add to bread crumbs and stir. Stir in the cilantro, Monterey Jack, and salt.
Heat oven to 400 F. Place mushroom caps on a large cookie sheet. Spoon goat cheese mix into eaps. Bake until mushroom caps are tender and filling is hot, about 20 min.
My husband said that I had to tell you to line the baking sheet with aluminum foil. The filling tends to drip down the sides of the mushrooms, and clean up is so much easier if the mushrooms sit on aluminum foil.