(updated 9/28/2023) Our friend The Big Boss from work, a man who could, and did, eat two dozen prawns, half a dozen drumsticks, and an additional two pounds of roasted meat at one sitting, has gone practically vegan. I created these mushroom caps stuffed with red pepper and quinoa for him, a winner of an umami-laden dish that feels hearty and satisfying while remaining low carb and vegan: gluten and dairy free. My only warning is that this recipe takes a bit of time with the advance prep.
- 36 medium-sized mushrooms, washed with stems removed
- 1/2 cup cooked quinoa
- 1/2 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 cup water
- 1 roasted red bell pepper
- 1 cup dry red wine or 3/4 cup vegetable broth
- 1 tbsp nutritional yeast plus extra to sprinkle on top
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon pepper
- spray olive oil
- Quinoa: 20-30 minutes. Follow these directions from The Kitchn if you’re worried about doing it wrong. Whatever you do, don’t overcook it; there’s nothing worse than soggy quinoa. Ok, there are lots of worse things – I’m thinking about the brussels sprouts creme brûlée from LL’s ill-fated 50th birthday party – but for the purposes of this recipe, you want your grain more al dente than mushy. Let cool.
- Red bell peppers: 30 minutes. Roasting them is the only way to get the flavor you want here. You may as well roast 4-5 and save the extra for salads, pizza topping, or bruschetta. Store them in a glass jar with a little olive oil drizzled on top; they’ll keep for up to 2 weeks.
- Mushrooms: 15 minutes wash and remove stems. Set stems aside
- Wine: if you want to cook with red wine instead of vegetable broth, simmer on low for 30 minutes to an hour to cook of must of the alcohol. Use a simmer burner and stir occasionally.
You can cook do the quinoa, mushrooms, and reduce the wine in advance.
- Once your quinoa and red bell peppers are cooked and cooled and your mushroom are clean, you can make the stuffing.
- Roughly chop your red pepper and mushroom stems, then put chopped vegetables in a blender with red wine or vegetable and pulse until you’ve made a medium paste. Add water as needed.
- In a large mixing bowl, combine combine quinoa, vegetable paste, nutritional yeast, and lemon pepper. Mix well.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit
- Spray a casserole or baking dish generously with olive oil.
- Gently stuff quinoa and pepper mixture inside the mushroom caps and place in the baking dish.
- Sprinkle tops with additional nutritional yeast.
- Bake for 10-15 minutes until heated through.
These are best warm, so serve immediately.
Store leftovers in airtight container in the refrigerator.