I love food! I love mushrooms! Way back when the world was young and life was beautiful, I had all the mushrooms to myself! Liam hated them and my boys thouht all fungus was ‘gag-a-licious’. Then, Grace appeared on the scene, and I suddenly had to share.
That child was weaned onto mushrooms, Brussel’s sprouts, and sauteed liver. She loves food just like her mama! Unfortunately, she seems to carry food-loving as a contageous virus. Shortly after she started taking a cut of MY mushrooms, Liam had a road to Cremini conversion. He pursued his new idol with the enthusiasm of a born-again zealot. Overnight, he went from picking shrooms off pizza to stealing all the mushrooms from my omlet and saying, “you can never have too many mushrooms”!
Shortly thereafter, Sam was indoctrinated. Suddenly, there were three vultures hovering around my bites of button shaped bliss. I went from eating my mushrooms AND all the shrooms the family picked out of their food to fighting for my (very small) share. Eventually, I had an epiphany of my own and started buying mushrooms in much larger quantities.
I’ve always loved stuffed mushrooms, but making them for a large family is time consuming and expensive. So, I got a little creative and ‘invented’ this casserole. It’s savory, rich, easy, and (best of all) mushroom-y. I typically make this Italian sausage and blue cheese version, but it’s easy to adapt. Bacon and chèvre are terrific! I also substitute the zucchini with whatever is fresh from the garden. Kale, spinach, and eggplant are particularly good.
This dish goes together very quickly, but it’s faster if the rice is already made. I often cook large batches of rice with wild rice added. I use part of it for a meal, and freeze the rest. When I want to make a soup or casserole with rice, I can just set the rice out to thaw or nuke it. Then, I can have a casserole like this in the oven in under fifteen minutes!
One of my favorite things about this recipe is that it makes its own sauce. I don’t use ‘cream of’ soups, so I often make scratch sauces. However, in this recipe the cream, vegetable juices, and cheese all become friendly. They make a wonderful rich sauce with no effort from me!
Does your family fight over mushrooms or do they gag and say ‘there’s a fungus among us’? Do you use ‘cream of’ soups in your cooking or have you become an expert at five minute cream sauces? Do you have any tips on keeping my one remaining mushroom hater out of my fungus?
Leave me a comment if you have the time! I would love to hear your mushroom recipes!
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