Friday, September 12, 2008

A warm and hearty fall bisque

Fresh Mushroom and Squash Bisque
Preparation Time: 15 mins. Cooking Time: 15 mins.

Easy to make with pre-cut vegetables and prepared in the microwave, this hearty fall bisque combines the rich mellow flavour of mushrooms with any of the varieties of squash. Evaporated milk adds creaminess but keeps this recipe low in fat.

1 tbsp butter
1 cup Each chopped onion and carrot
1/2 lb. sliced fresh white mushrooms (about 3 cups)
2 cups peeled, cubed squash
3 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup evaporated milk (or light cream)
1/2 tsp salt
8 acorn squash bowls* (optional)

Garnish: Sour cream and basil leaves (optional)

In large (8 cup/2L) microwaveable bowl combine butter, onion, carrot, mushrooms and squash. Cover; microwave at high for 8-10 minutes or until vegetables are tender, stirring once. Transfer half the vegetables and half the broth to blender or food processor; purée until smooth. Repeat with remaining vegetables and broth. Return to bowl; stir in milk and microwave on high for 5-7 minutes or until heated through. Serve in squash bowls, if desired. Garnish with sour cream swirl and basil if desired.
Makes 8 servings

Variation: In large saucepan combine butter, vegetables and broth. Bring to boil; lower heat, cover and simmer 10-12 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Add milk and purée as directed.

Acorn Squash Bowls: purchase 4 medium acorn squash. Cut a thin slice off the bottom and top to allow “squash bowls” to sit level. To ease cutting squash in half, microwave each squash about 3-6 minutes or until a knife will pierce the skin easily; then halve with a knife and scoop out seeds and some of pulp to make the cavity larger.

Nutritional Information:
Per Serving 1 Bowl
Calories: 68
Sodium: 526 mg
Protein : 2.8 g
Fat: 2.0 g
Carbohydrates: 9.9 g
Dietary Fibre: 1.6 g

Source: Mushrooms Canada
Picture (C) Mushrooms Canada

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Mario Batali gives mushrooms his endorsement


"Time grows increasingly precious as Americans enter the fall season with packed schedules, shorter days and less time to make dinner.

Rejuvenate the family with easy dishes made with mushrooms that add essential nutrients and the elusive fifth flavor, umami.

Chefs like Mario Batali, an award-winning celebrity chef, restaurateur and author, have long known about umami, which means “savory deliciousness” in Japanese. Batali credits mushrooms as one of his hidden treasures when it comes to umami.

“Mushrooms add a burst of rich, savory flavor that makes food taste good from the first bite to the last. Whether I’m cooking at home or the restaurant, mushrooms give that ‘something special’ quality to any dish.”

In Batali’s new book, “Italian Grill,” he showcases Portabellas with Arugula and Parmigiano, which combines Mario’s love of mushrooms and grilling into a unique and scrumptious entrée.

Not only are mushrooms a delicious choice for family meals, they’re part of a healthy diet. According to the Journal of the American Heart Association, only 10 percent of Americans have optimal blood levels of vitamin D, which is especially alarming as sunlight becomes less available in the fall and winter. Mushrooms are the only fresh vegetable or fruit with 4 percent of the daily value of vitamin D per serving and may be a natural solution for getting more of this important “sunshine vitamin.”

For Mario Batali's Delicious Recipes visit the Northwest Herald.

Friday, September 5, 2008

Grilled Oriental Mushroom Salad

Assorted fresh mushrooms and a zesty oriental style dressing is the stars in this warm zippy salad-- perfect for lunch or to accompany grilled meat.

Print the full recipe from the Mushrooms Canada website.

For more cooking videos and guides visit the Mushrooms Canada Cooking Classroom.