I was also wondering how I've been getting to know so many vegetarian people and that I have to have something up my sleeve when cooking for my vegetarian friends.
So, friday I had the oportunity of cooking dinner just for me, since husband wasn't coming home so soon. And I came home form work wondering what would be the best thing I could think from the top of my head. I was floating between give in to my spinach craving or make something creamy with mushroom, when it hit me: Why don't I get both?
First thing that came to my head was Portobelo mushroom... yummm. But unfortunatly, my always faithfull market wasn't going to colaborate. I always see Portobelo mushroom over there, but today that I actually wanted to buy some... They magically vanished. I was walking away when some beautiful Shitakes seemed to call my name! I didn't think twice before giving them a nice home: My belly!
Creamy Spinach and Shitake
- 1 Spinach
- 3 garlic cloves
- 2 table spoon of canola oil
- 1 1/2 cup light heavy cream
- 8 shitake mushrooms
- 4 teaspoons of salted butter
- 1/2 cup grated mozzarela cheese
- Gently but thoroughly wash the Shitake mushrooms and cut off the stems. If the stems are soft, reserve them. Wash the spinach and separete the leaves from the hard branches and flower.
- Thinly dice the Shitake stems. Smash the garlic and saute the garlic and Shitake stems with canola oil in a pan with lid. When the garlic start turning light brown remove from heat and remove the oil.
- Return to pan to the heat and add the spinach. Toss a little to mix the garlic and the greens. Cover the pan and let the spinach cook. It will release water and reduce the volume drastically. When it looks soggy, keep cooking with the lid off, to evaporate the water.
- While the spinach finishes cooking, arrange the Shitake (bottom side up) in a baking pan and put 1/2 teaspoon of butter on each one.
- After almost all of the water evaporated, add the heavy cream and stir, reduce the flame to a minimun and let it simmer for a bit, just so the cream can get the flavor.
- Turn off the fire. Add a spoon full of the spinach cream to each mushroom. If after you do this there's some cream left, you can toss around the baking pan, between the mushrooms.
- Top each mushroom with the grated mozzarela and put in the over at 200ºC untill the mozzarela start turning light brown.
I like to remove the oil after the saute, to reduce the fat from the dish.
The Shitake doesn't stay as firm as the Portobelo, Thats why this became more a bed of Shitake for the spinach cream, than the stuffed mushroom I was hoping for at first.
The butter melts and gets inside that spaces on the bottom of mushroom, yummy. You can totally go without it, anyway.