I’ve started my annual football season tradition of planning to eat snacks on Sundays instead of a full dinner, which will invariably last two weeks before I forget all about it and go back to planning a meal and then whining that “I don’t feel like cooking, I just wanna relax!” My life is so hard.
But it can be tricky to come up with snacks that are really good but not so filling that I can’t graze on them for a while. (Translation: I’d like to be eating cheese and bread and sausage and mayonnaise-based dips and chips and cookies and, you know, tasty delicious things like that. But I also want my pants to fit.)
Stuffed mushrooms are a good example of something that seems like it should be fairly healthy, but on closer inspection, is often full of cheese, and not just any cheese, but that most-delicious and fattening of examples – cream cheese.
Fortunately, this recipe keeps it light by skipping the cheese, flavoring the filling with just shallots, parsley, and sun-dried tomatoes, with bread crumbs used for bulk and just a sprinkle of parmesan grated on top for an accent.
Even though it was just Dave and I watching football together on a Sunday afternoon, and we had a few other snacks, I made the full recipe. But it turns out these stuffed mushrooms aren’t the type of snack that you graze on throughout an afternoon, because they were so darn good that we snarfed them up immediately. And since they’re not very filling, you can eat a bunch of them and still have plenty of room for some hummus!
One year ago: Roasted Carrots
The only minor change I’ll make to this recipe, to bring it from really damn good to perfect, is to sprinkle the inside of the mushrooms with a bit of salt before roasting them the first time. Not so much to eliminate more liquid, but just to season them. (Even Dave agreed with this, and he isn’t as salt-crazy as I am.)
½ ounce sun-dried tomatoes (about 5)
2 tablespoons olive oil
18 white mushrooms, caps reserved, stems pulled out and chopped fine
½ cup finely chopped shallots
2 garlic cloves, minced
⅓ cup fine dry bread crumbs
1 large egg yolk, beaten lightly
¼ cup fresh parsley leaves, washed well, spun dry, and minced
½ teaspoon dried basil, crumbled
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan
1. Preheat oven to 400°F.
2. If your tomatoes are packed in oil, rinse them before chopping them finely. If they’re not packed in oil, soak them in a small bowl in hot water to cover for 5 minutes. Reserving 1 tablespoon soaking liquid, drain tomatoes well and chop fine.
3. Lay mushroom caps, stems removed, face down on baking sheet either lightly sprayed with cooking spray or lined with parchment paper. Bake them approximately 10 minutes, or until their liquid puddles underneath. Remove from the oven. Carefully pour off liquid that has gathered in the bottom of the pan, and then again, carefully, turn mushroom caps over so they are ready to be filled.
4. In a small skillet heat oil over moderate heat until hot but not smoking and cook chopped mushrooms stems, shallots and garlic, stirring until shallots are softened. In a bowl stir together mushrooms mixture, bread crumbs, tomatoes, reserved soaking liquid, yolk, parsley, basil, and salt and pepper to taste. Mound stuffing in reserved mushroom caps and arrange caps in a lightly greased shallow baking dish, or the same parchment-lined pan you’ve roasted your mushrooms in. Sprinkle mushrooms with Parmesan and bake in middle of oven 15 minutes.