October 26, 2009

Mushrooms in a Mustard-Wine Sauce

We eat a lot of mushrooms, much to my daughter's chagrin. If you really think about it, mushrooms are gross. I've seen enough wild mushrooms in the forest to start me thinking, "Do I really eat stuff related to this?"

But mushrooms do have nutritional value: They have a high selenium content, reported to help prevent prostate cancer, and they contain a fair amount of B-vitamins. Mushrooms also taste great if done right. So it's best to forget where mushrooms come from and what some of their uglier cousins look like.

The nice thing about mushrooms is that can readily adapt to just about any flavor. We typically mushrooms in an oriental setting, but this recipe is somewhat different. The mushrooms are cooked in a mustard and wine sauce, which gives it a tangy but rich flavor.

Mushrooms in a Mustard-Wine Sauce



1 T Dijon mustard
2 T Worcestershire sauce
2 T brown sugar
¾ c dry red wine
1 T soy sauce
ground pepper


1 oz dried shiitake mushrooms
½ c boiling water
1 lb mushrooms
1½ T oil
1 onion, diced
salt to taste
1 large red bell pepper, diced
½ block of firm tofu, cubed


1. Cover the dried shiitake mushrooms with the boiling water and set aside until they soften, about 10 minutes. Reserve the soaking liquid and cut the hard stems out. Cut the mushrooms into strips.

2. Clean the fresh mushrooms and cut into halves (or quarters if they are big).

3. Heat oil in a large skillet, add the onions and a pinch of salt, and saute over medium heat until translucent, about 3-4 minutes.

4. Add both fresh and dried mushrooms and the peppers and cook a little bit more, stirring often, until the mushrooms begin to darken.

5. Add the sauce and the soaking liquid from the shiitakes. Add the tofu and simmer slowly until the sauce has reduced and thickened, about 40 minutes.

6. Serve in bowls on top of rice or noodles.

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