Portobello Mushroom Pot Roast

Mushrooms, mushrooms, mushrooms! People love them or can’t stand them. I love them! Mushroom lasagna, in a marsala sauce over a good steak, tucked into a salad, stuffed with crabmeat and broiled with melty cheese on top, grilled Portobello burgers. I’ll eat mushrooms any way you want to cook them for me. They are also a great go-to in vegetarian dishes for meat eaters; and their hearty, meaty taste works well in stews and soups.

This dish is easy to make, everything goes into the slow cooker and is thickened up a bit at the end. It definitely lands into the comfort food dishes for the fall season! I served it with egg noodles; however, it would be great over rice or just by itself with crusty bread to mop up the wonderful mushroom sauce.

In addition to the thyme and Porcini mushroom powder that cooks with it, I add some freshly ground black pepper and sea salt to taste before adding the cornstarch mixture for thickening. Porcini mushroom powder is optional. I like the extra blast of umami that it gives dishes. If you can’t find it locally, The Spice House in Chicago sells it online.

The version below is vegetarian. To make it vegan, use vegan Worcestershire sauce.

Enjoy! 😊

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Ingredients

4 medium sized Yukon Gold potatoes, cut into bite-sized chunks
1 pound baby bella mushrooms, cut the large ones in halves or quarters
2 large carrots, peeled and cut into bite-sized pieces
1 cup frozen pearl onions
5 cloves garlic, minced
3 sprigs fresh thyme
3 cups vegetable stock, divided
1/2 cup dry red wine
3 Tbsp tomato paste
3 Tbsp Worcestershire
2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 Tbsp Porcini Mushroom powder (optional)
Kosher salt and freshly-cracked black pepper

Add potatoes, mushrooms, carrots, onions, garlic, thyme, 2-1/2 cups vegetable stock, wine, tomato paste, Worcestershire, and Porcini Mushroom powder together in the bowl of the slow cooker, and gently toss to combine. Cook on low for 6-8 hours, or on high for 3-4 hours, until the potatoes and carrots are tender.

In a separate bowl, whisk together the remaining cold 1/2 cup vegetable stock and cornstarch until combined. Add to the roast mixture, and gently toss to mix together. Continue to cook for 5-10 minutes, until the sauce thickens up a bit.

Serve immediately, garnish with fresh parsley if desired.

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Weeknight Taco Chili

Fall is my favorite season. A noticeable chill in the air, the leaves start to turn, it’s incredibly beautiful. It’s also the beginning of comfort food season! One of my top comfort foods is chili. Typically, this is a weekend effort for me – low, slow cooking for hours, and no beans!

However, I was looking for a weeknight chili that I could whip up with pantry ingredients that most of us have on hand. This came together in 20 minutes and simmered for an additional 30, spreading its wonderful aroma throughout the house. The chili has a bit of a taco flair with the addition of black olives, tomatoes with green chilies, and taco seasoning. I topped mine with tortilla chips, cheese, a dollop of sour cream, scallions and onions. Delicious!!

The seasoning I used for this is The Spice House’s Taco Seasoning. I usually buy most of my spices from Savory Spices, and they have a new Chicharron Salt that I’m going to pick up to try this week. However, The Spice House has some neat spice mixes. In addition to the Taco Seasoning, my other favorites are the Lake Shore Drive Seasoning and their powdered Porcini “Extra AA” Dried Mushrooms.

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Let’s cook! 😊

Ingredients

  • 1 lb grass-fed, ground sirloin
  • 1 small onion, chopped fine
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • 15 oz can pinto beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz can dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 oz can tomato sauce
  • 10 oz can diced tomatoes and green chilis
  • 8 oz can sliced black olives, drained
  • 2-1/2 Tbsp taco seasoning (or a taco seasoning packet)

Recommended Toppings

  • shredded cheese
  • green onions
  • fresh cilantro
  • tortilla chips
  • or serve over cooked rice

Directions – so simple!

Heat a large soup pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the ground sirloin and onion; and sauté until cooked through, breaking the sirloin up as it cooks. Add remaining ingredients (except toppings), turn heat up to high to bring to a boil. Cover the pot and turn the heat down to medium-low. Simmer for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste, adjust seasonings if desired, and serve with toppings.

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