Mmmmm… so excited about this one. I just got home from visiting my sister in California, and attending CSM (the national Physical Therapy Conference) in Las Vegas, and I sure am ready to get back to my routine! After a lot of meals out and taxing my tummy with foreign foods (after all, the West Coast IS kinda like a different country…), I feel like I need to reset my system with some healthy, meat-free meals.
Enter stuffed mushroom caps. While in Vegas, we had a Duke Alumni and Friends reception and one of the dishes they served were stuffed mushrooms with goat cheese and bread crumbs. Hence the inspiration for this recipe. While there’s no goat cheese and no bread crumbs or panko, I tried to capture the same depth of flavor and that to-die-for gooey, cheesy texture while keeping it light and heart-healthy. Since I’m a sucker for Mediterranean food, I decided to stuff larger portobello mushroom caps with quinoa, chickpeas, olives, capers, and lots of feta, plus some other classic Med-style ingredients.
I love the combination of the lemon and parsley in this recipe, combined with the slightly tangy flavor of the capers and saltiness of the kalamata olives. The quinoa also brings a nutty taste, and of course the mushrooms and chickpeas give the entire dish a meatiness without actually requiring any meat (although if you really miss it, ground turkey would be delish).
I’m just happy because I got to finally use my truffle oil. There is nothing greater in the realm of gourmet food than truffles. Just saying.
Have a great week, everyone!
- 10 portobello mushroom caps, cleaned and stems removed
- 1 1/2 cups quinoa, dry
- 1 small onion, sliced
- 1 1/2 tbsp minced garlic
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 1 lemon
- 6 roma tomatoes, quartered
- 1 small jar roasted red peppers
- 1 large bunch fresh parsley (about 1/2 cup minced)
- 4 cups fresh baby spinach
- 2 cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 1/2 cup kalamata olives, rinsed and chopped roughly
- 1 small jar capers
- 1 cup feta cheese, crumbled
- 1 tbsp Greek seasoning
- salt and pepper, to taste
- truffle salt, for finishing (optional)
- truffle oil, for finishing (optional)
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
- To clean mushrooms, carefully pull the stems to one side until they pop off. Using a small spoon, gently scrape out the gills inside the cap (remember, they’re mushrooms, not rocks, so it shouldn’t take a lot of force!) and turn mushroom over to discard the remains into a trash can. Don’t worry if you don’t get every single gill out- just go for the majority!
- Gently rub the top of the mushroom cap with a moist paper towel.
- In a casserole dish or baking sheet sprayed with cooking spray, place mushrooms (cavity-side down) and cook 5 minutes, just until they are thoroughly dried out. Remove from oven and set aside until ready for filling.
- Prepare quinoa according to package directions.
- In a medium saucepan, cook onions and garlic until soft- about 4 minutes. Add to cooked quinoa and toss. Set aside.
- In a food processor, combine tomatoes, roasted red peppers, parsley, 1 tbsp olive oil, and juice from 1/2 of lemon. Pulse until roughly chopped- this should take <10 seconds! (Don’t over-pulse!)
- Using a spatula, spoon mixture into a large colander and drain excess water.
- To same food processor, add chickpeas, spinach, and remaining lemon juice. Pulse until roughly chopped, about 5 seconds. Transfer mixture to a large bowl.
- When tomato mixture has drained, add to bowl with chickpeas.
- Stir in kalamata olives and capers.
- Add 1 tbsp (or to taste) Greek seasoning, salt and pepper. Stir to combine.
- Toss in the cooked quinoa and feta.
- Fill each mushroom cap (remember those?) with about 1/4-1/3 cup of filling (depending on the size of the mushroom). Pack down into the cavity with the back of the spoon.
- Sprinkle additional feta, truffle salt, and pepper over top of each mushroom. Place back into casserole dish or baking sheet.
- Bake for 15 minutes, or until feta has softened and browned slightly.
- Remove from oven, and drizzle with the teensiest bit of truffle oil (optional). Cool for a few minutes before serving!
Add feta, Greek seasoning, and salt and pepper. At this point, you could definitely eat this on its own, or set some aside for a quick and healthy salad later in the week! (See note at bottom of this post)