Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Mushroom-Bean Stew with Garlic Crumb Topping

This smelled so wonderful while it was cooking (even M mentioned how good it smelled more than once) that I made a comment along the lines of "I hope this tastes half as amazing as it smells!" Oh, did it ever! :)

This is a great treat to use up half a can of beans and whatever veggies you have hanging around the kitchen. It started out as a rather plain recipe but I gave it the G treatment and it turned into something quite spectacular!
It's full of protein, iron, complex carbs, and fibre while still being very low in fat and cholesterol (zero cholesterol if you leave out the cheese).

It's vegan if you don't cheat like I did and add a smidgen of Parmesan to the crumbs...
I'd bet money that herbivores and omnivores alike would really enjoy this so it's a great one to serve for company (and it's just so pretty and colorful - who wouldn't love it?!)

I'm saving the best for last here - this goes together in less than 45 minutes (including chopping!) Yeay!

Great for a quickie weeknight dinner.

Serves 2 (easy to double or triple if needed)

1-1/2 tsp. olive oil, divided
5-6 button mushrooms, quartered
Approx. 1 cup green onions, sliced

1/8 cup red onion, diced
1-1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/2 can (15-ounce) black beans, drained and rinsed (or whatever beans you have)
1/4 cup reduced-sodium vegetable broth

1 tomato, chopped (I included the seeds)
1 large garlic clove, minced (for the stew)
1/2 tsp. dried tarragon
1/2 tsp. dried culinary lavender, crushed

1/4 tsp. dried fennel, crushed
1/8 tsp. sea salt
1/8 tsp. freshly-ground black pepper

Small amount of panko breadcrumbs (1/4-1/2 cup or so)
1 small garlic clove, minced (for the crumbly topping)
1/8 cup fresh parsley, chopped
Optional: 1-2 tbsp. freshly-grated Parmesan cheese

1. Heat 3/4 tsp. of the oil in a large non-stick saucepan over medium-high heat until hot. Stir in the mushrooms, green onions, red onion, and Italian seasoning and cook for 10 minutes or until softened.

2. Stir the beans, large garlic clove, tomato, br
oth, tarragon, lavender, and fennel. Cook until heated through and thickened. Stir in the salt and pepper.
Yum! There it is sans crumbs/before it got really thick:

3. While the stew cooks/thickens, prepare the crumb topping. Heat the remaining 3/4 tsp. oil in a small non-stick skillet over medium heat. Cook and stir the panko for 6-8 minutes or until it is crispy and golden. Add the small garlic clove during the last couple of minutes so you get the garlic flavour without getting a burned-garlic flavour.
They should look like this (mine really weren't that washed out.. I have the oh-so-lovely fluorescent lighting in my kitchen to thank for that!):

4. Add the fresh parsley to the bean mixture and then sprinkle the crumbs on top of the stew.
If you choose to add Parm to the crumbs, transfer the crumbs from the skillet to a small bowl and let them cool off for a couple of minutes. Grate the Parm into the bowl and mix to combine.

I based this on the recipe "Golden Crumb-Topped Mushroom-Bean Stew" from the February/March 2009 issue of Cooking Pleasures magazine.

How I made it my own:
*I used black beans instead of Great Northern beans (had half a can of black beans open on top of having a bad case of Monday Brain and forgetting to soak my dried Navy beans that I was originally going to use in place of the GN beans... Despite all that, I thought the black beans were wonderful in it!)
*I used green onions in place of leeks. I just can't do leeks... I'm sure I've told this story but my mom used to make this potato-leek soup every year on Ash Wednesday. Nasty... tasted like ash! Sad that I claim to be this open-minded liberal yet I just refuse to give leeks a second chance! lol ;) And like green onions are really any different! Please..!
*I added onion (much as I hate leeks, I just can't have enough of all their other allium cousins!)
*I used panko in place of a slice of bread
*I added garlic to the panko
*Added the tomato
*I also added lavender, fennel, and tarragon
*Almost forgot... I'm still out of wine and veggie broth! I did find some "Reduced-Sodium (organic!) Vegetable Bouillon" so I cut a chunk off a cube of that and dissolved it to make "veggie broth"

1 comment:

Joelen said...

This looks great and that hint of lavendar sounds like a nice addition too!