I haven’t been cooking much at home, which is why there haven’t been many recipes posted on this blog. I have been taking lots of photographs of different food. Food that I’ve cooked, and just random shots of produce. I’ve been posting those pictures over at Facebook.
But the other day I was off work and we were shopping. As we were discussing dinner options I spied big, fat, scrumptious looking portabella mushrooms. Then, the mini sweet peppers leaped out at me. After consulting the partner, we decided on a dinner with roasted portabella mushrooms and asparagus, mashed potatoes, and caramelized sweet peppers and onions. A meal that contains comfort food at it’s finest.
I’m getting in the habit of taking photographs, so I was able to document this plate. A few of the production pictures were off, mainly the mashed potatoes. That upset me. I really wanted to show them off.
Roasting the mushrooms and asparagus are easy. It doesn’t even require a recipe. Find the biggest, best Portabellas you can. Turn the oven on to broil. Rub the mushrooms with olive oil, salt and pepper. Put onto a baking pan and roast for 8 or 10 minutes, or until the mushrooms are releasing a little of their liquid, but not all of it. You want the mushrooms to retain a meaty quality. Roast the asparagus using this same method, coat with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and place next to mushrooms.Watch the asparagus closely while it’s in the oven, it might finish before the portabellas.
Serve with Caramalized Peppers & Onions (recipe follows), and Vegan Whipped Potatoes. Make a little sauce for the mushrooms. I made Magic Sauce, but you could make a mushroom gravy. This might possibly achieve “Umami,” or, the Fifth Flavor for this meal. Of course, I thought about this after I finished the meal, took the photographs, and delivered the plate to the very hungry Partner, who has to sit there and smell all the good things I’m cooking, and waits patiently for food to get onto the table. (I am blessed with having someone in my life who doesn’t constantly come into the kitchen, sneaking bites).
- 1/2 lb Mini Sweet Peppers, julienned
- 1 Sweet Onion, julienned
- 5 tbsp Olive Oil
- Salt to taste
Heat up a saute pan. Add the olive oil. Let the oil get hot, then add the peppers and onions. Turn the heat down to a high simmer. Cook the peppers and onions, stirring occasionally, until they caramelize (start to turn light brown). Add the salt while the peppers and onions are cooking.
If you leave the heat on too high, the peppers will char instead of caramelize. Make sure that the heat on the stove is adjusted accordingly.
Caramelizing onions and peppers takes them past the "sweating" stage, the stage where the vegetables just turn translucent. This actually makes them turn brown. You can cook them until they achieve a deep golden brown color, or just until they start to turn. Your choice. The longer you cook them, the sweeter they will taste.