Portobello's are the vegetarian's steak!  But even the meat-eater will enjoy this recipe. 

The thick, meaty texture of the portobello, combined with the quinoa and nutty flavor from the walnuts are an absolute must try!  I made this recipe for dinner last night and I can't decide what I like best about it.  From the balsamic vinegar marinade to the cranberries and walnuts, each flavor adds something surprising and delicious to the overall taste.     

Another plus...quinoa is the only grain that is a complete protein source.  Since quinoa tastes great as a leftover, pack any leftover quinoa mixture for weekday lunches.

Cleaning Tip for Portobello's:  Technically, you should not wash mushrooms.  Rather, tap them on the counter to loosen any growing medium.  That didn't work for me.  I still saw little specks of dirt, so I lightly rinsed mine and they seemed fine. 

Removing the stem and gills:  You can twist the stem to remove it but use caution as you could break the mushroom cap.  I suggest using a small, sharp knife and gently cutting the stem even with the inside of the gills.  Also remove the gills with a sharp knife.  It's ok to leave a little gill around the edge of the mushroom or the cap may tear.

Cooking Tip for Portobello's:  The longer you cook the portobello, the meatier (firmer textured) the mushroom gets.

Serves:  3 large portobello mushrooms (5-6" in diameter)

3 large portobello mushrooms, stems and gills removed
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons grainy mustard
2/3 cup quinoa, uncooked
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 carrot, finely diced
1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
1/4 cup walnut pieces
1/4 cup dried cherries, raisins, or cranberries (I made my recipe with cranberries)
2 green onions, thinly sliced
Salt and pepper
1 cup finely chopped parsley
Parmesan cheese

In a small bowl, whisk together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and mustard.  Transfer to a large container and place the mushrooms cap side down in the oil mixture.  Let marinate for at least 30 minutes.

Cooking quinoa on the stovetop:  In a medium saucepan, combine quinoa and 1½ cups water.  Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer covered for 12 minutes, or until water has absorbed.  Another option:  cook quinoa in a rice cooker

Preheat oven to 350˚F.  Place mushrooms on a baking sheet cap side down and spread any leftover marinade on the stem side.  Bake for 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat 2 teaspoons of oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add garlic and carrot and cook for 5 minutes.  Stir in cooked quinoa, cherry tomatoes, walnuts, dried fruit, green onions, and salt and pepper to taste; heat for 2-5 minutes.  Remove from heat and stir in parsley.

Stuff each mushroom cap with quinoa mixture and bake for 10 minutes.  Drizzle each with olive oil and sprinkle with Parmesan cheese.

Nutrient Analysis:

Calories: 269; Total Fat: 11 g; Saturated Fat: 1 g; Polyunsaturated Fat: 5 g; Monounsaturated Fat: 4 g; Cholesterol: 0 mg; Sodium: 41 mg; Carbohydrates: 34 g; Fiber: 5 g; Protein: 8 g

Recipe courtesy of Today's Dietitian and Matthew Kadey, MS, RD

In Health and Happiness,

Kelly Harrington, MS, RD

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist for Healthy Goods

Kelly Harrington, MS, RD

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