As the weather cools down here in my corner of the world, my belly starts craving some hearty comfort food. Like this steaming pot of stew.
I wanted to make a mushroom stew and came across this recipe which sounded perfect because it included beans. I started and then the devil in me started to veer off-track, throwing in a little bit of this and a little bit of that, until I got a little a little too far from where I had begun. No worries, though, because we — the stew and I — ended up in a good place.
This is one of those your-body-is-your-temple recipes, meaning it is super good for you. It is also gluten-free, if you are so inclined. Besides the mushrooms there is an armful of gorgeous, fresh, lifegiving veggies here like carrots and celeries and tomatoes and onions. Combine that with the fiber-rich, protein-loaded goodness of beans and the warmth of rosemary. At just 169 calories a serving, eight grams of protein and nearly seven grams of fiber (check out the nutrition label at the end of the recipe), you will have a dish that sings a joyful ditty to your heart and your tummy.
I am off to enjoy my Sunday now– ah, why can’t we have three of them each week– but not before I share the recipe. Enjoy all, and enjoy the rest of the weekend!
Mushroom and Bean Stew with Rosemary
(Makes 8 servings)
1 cup Great Northern Beans, soaked overnight and then pressure-cooked or boiled with enough water to cover by an inch, until tender. If using canned, substitute two cups of canned, drained beans.
1 1/2 pounds cremini mushrooms, quartered if large, halved if small
2 carrots, finely diced
2 sticks of celery, finely diced
1 large onion, finely diced
5 cloves of garlic, thinly sliced
2 medium tomatoes, pureed
1 cup olives
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup white wine (optional)
3 bay leaves
2 sprigs of rosemary. Strip the leaves from the woody stems, discard the stems, and mince the leaves
Salt and ground black pepper to taste
Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add the onion, celery and carrots and season with some salt and pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables soften and the onions turn translucent, about eight minutes.
Add the garlic and the bay leaves and continue to saute for two more minutes.
Increase heat to medium-high, add the mushrooms and saute another five minutes, stirring frequently.
Add the white wine if using and scrape up any browned bits of vegetables sticking to the bottom of the pan. Let the wine reduce so the alcohol is cooked out, about five minutes.
Add the tomato puree, cooked beans, rosemary, and half a cup of water. If you’d like a thinner stew, add more water.
Bring the stew to a boil then lower heat and simmer for 15 minutes or until the stew has thickened and all the vegetables are cooked. Add the olives.
Add more salt and pepper if needed.
Stir and turn off heat. Serve hot with some crusty bread or over rice.