Southern Style Portabello Mushrooms and Cornbread
This recipe follows Edna Lewis' belief that the trick when cooking mushrooms is to do it "over high heat, as this seems to seal in their moisture and keep them plump and firm."
- For the Cornbread-
- Cornbread mix, your portion
- 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese, optional
- For the Mushrooms-
- Portabello mushrooms, your portion
- Dried mushrooms, any type, 2 TBS- optional
- Butter, 2 TBS
- Onion, chopped, 2/3 of a cup
- Cabbage, chopped, 2/3 of a cup
- Garlic, chopped, 4 cloves
- Salt- 1 tsp
- Paprika- 1 tsp
- Black pepper- 1/4 tsp
- Parsley, fresh chopped, 1/4 cup
- Buttermilk, 1 cup, well shaken
- 4-6 dashes tabasco sauce, optional
- For the Cornbread
- Follow the directions on the package. If you like, you could add 1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese to the batter before baking.
- For the Mushrooms
- Remove the stems from the mushrooms. In a small bowl combine the portabello mushroom stems and a handful of dried mushrooms, if you have some. Boil 1/4 cup of water and pour it over the mushrooms in the bowl. Immediately cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a little plate and set aside.
- Wipe off the portabello mushrooms and slice each one diagonally into 4-6 "steaks" 1/2 inch thick. Rub the slices with the salt, pepper, and paprika. Get a cast iron pan searing hot and add a tiny amount of oil- 1/2 tsp or so. Carefully use a folded dry paper towel or clean kitchen towel to spread the oil across the pan. Add the mushrooms in a single layer and sear them on high heat for 2 minutes on each side. Set aside.
- In a separate pan, melt the butter on medium heat. Add the onion, cabbage, and garlic. Saute until golden, about 5 minutes. Turn the heat down, and strain the bowl of mushroom stems and dried mushrooms into the pan so just the flavorful liquid is used. (You could also use the rehydrated dried mushrooms, if you like.) Cook at a lively simmer until most of the liquid is absorbed. Add the buttermilk, parsley, tabasco (optional) and the grilled portabello steaks, and cook just until warmed on a low heat. Don't let it boil.
- Serve the herby, creamy mushrooms with the cornbread and some crisp green salad.
- Not Included in the Box: Dried mushrooms (opt.), butter, salt, paprika, black pepper, tabasco sauce (optional)
- Chef Tip: You can dress up the sauce for the mushrooms by adding chopped scallions or dill toward the end of cooking. If you're not a vegetarian, try sauteeing 4 TBS chopped bacon along with the onion.
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