Guest Post: Mushroom Soup Gratinée by Sweetsugarbean

We have a guest in the kitchen! We welcome back Renee of Sweetsugarbean who is always happy to share her creativity. This time around, she's giving winter a whole new life with a warming, comforting bowl of delicious mushroom soup.

Hi everyone! My name is Renée Kohlman and​ ​Sweetsugarbean​ ​is my food blog I’ve been writing for over six years. I live in beautiful Saskatoon, Saskatchewan where I happily whip up delicious creations in my little green kitchen. Being a professional pastry chef as well as a food blogger, and recipe developer, I’m lucky to have turned my passion for all things food into a career I love. I’m especially proud of my debut cookbook​ All the Sweet Things​ which will be released this spring. Free time (remind me what that is again!) includes gardening, reading and eating too much chocolate.


I’m always excited when Mushrooms Canada asks me to write a guest post for their blog. Mushrooms are a staple in my kitchen and it’s always a thrill to put them in new recipes. For this soup, I’ve used fresh cremini mushrooms and dried porcini. Mushrooms are great to use year-round, but especially in winter because they are the only vegetable that contains vitamin D. Bursting with antioxidants and cancer-fighting compounds, not to mention being low in calories, mushrooms play an important and delicious part of my culinary adventures in the kitchen.

With winter upon us, soup is always on in my kitchen. What a better way to warm up and stay cozy than having a delicious broth of vegetables simmering on the back burner. This mushroom soup is a bit of a twist on the classic French Onion. Instead of simmering onions though, we simmer plenty of mushrooms in red wine and vegetable stock. I’ve stirred in Dijon mustard, for a bit of a bite, and plenty of thyme. You could use fresh, but dried works just as well. The mushrooms soak in all of the lovely flavours, and I think the soup tastes better the next day, after the flavours have mixed and mingled. And, who doesn’t love the giant cheesy crouton on top? I like to make a tray of cheese toast then set them atop individual bowls of soup, though if you have oven-proof bowls, you could place the soup and the crouton under the broiler. I hope you love this soup as much as I do! Stay warm!


Mushroom Soup Gratinée
Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cook Time: 30 minutes | Makes: 6 servings

Ingredients
3 Tbsp unsalted butter
1 red onion, diced
1 pound cremini mushrooms, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (.5 oz/14 g) package dried porcini mushrooms
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 ½ tsp dried thyme
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
4 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1 cup red wine
6 slices sourdough bread at least 3 inches in diameter
1 cup shredded Gruyére

Method
1. Heat the butter in a Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium-high heat.
2. Add the diced onions and sauté for about 5 minutes, until they are translucent.
3. Stir in the garlic and mushrooms and continue cooking for another 8 minutes or so, until the mushrooms have softened.
4. Stir in the mustard, thyme, salt, pepper and cook another minute. Stir in the stock and wine. Bring to a boil, cover and turn the heat to medium-low.
5. Simmer for about 15 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasoning.
6. Place the bread on a baking sheet and divide the cheese among the slices.
7. Place the baking sheet under the broiler and toast until the croutons are golden brown.
8. Ladle the soup into bowls and top each with a cheesy crouton.


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Warm up and stay cozy! You can't beat the rich, earthy flavours of this tasty soup. It certainly makes winter look good!! As always, a big thank you to Renee for bringing such wonderful mushroom-packed recipes to our table.

Be sure to follow along with Renee on her blog Sweetsugarbean, on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest and Instagram!

Guest Post: Whole Roasted Mushroom Chili by The Cookie Writer

We have a guest in the kitchen! Kacey of The Cookie Writer is here and are so excited to have her join us. We're starting off the New Year right with this whole roasted mushroom chili! Healthy, vegan, gluten-free, and just plain delicious, you can always add in extra ingredients to make it your own!!


Hello! Kacey from The Cookie Writer here with my whole roasted mushroom chili recipe! I'm so thankful to be here today as a guest writer for Mushrooms Canada (bragging rights for winning the Appetizer Spotlight Contest last August with my Mushroom and Beef Cheese Balls!)

Mushrooms have always been a part of my life. I remember growing up with my mom making the best breaded mushrooms ever! I still use that recipe to this day, and find no restaurant recipe compares :) That being said, I have fully branched out from breaded mushrooms and learned to incorporate them into every recipe imaginable.


Being vegetarian, I find mushrooms are a great meat substitute. They are, well, meaty in texture, and add a lot of flavour to a dish. My favourite method is roasting mushrooms with thyme, so it is no wonder this whole roasted mushroom chili came to be! Funny enough I had made this totally unhealthy bacon-meat-filled chili for my husband, and this vegan chili the next day for myself. And you know what? My husband had no issue devouring his AND my chili! He suggested whole roasted mushrooms go into his meat chili next time :)

With almost all of my recipe, this one can easily be customized to your liking. Add more veggies, or take away some (my dad hates onions, so his would have none!) Get creative! I used a mix of button and mini portobellos, but any of your favourite mushrooms can work here (though roasting time may vary.) And if spicy meals are not your thing, don't fret. My daughter handled this recipe like a champ, and she is only 5! I wanted the mushroom flavour to pull through, so I reduced my usually chili powder amount significantly.


Whole Roasted Mushroom Chili
Simple and delicious, the whole roasted mushrooms lend a ton of flavour to this meal! 

Prep: 20 minutes | Cook Time: 1 hour 15 minutes | Total: 1 hour 35 minutes

Ingredients
24 oz button and mini portobello mushrooms, whole
2 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. dried thyme
Salt and pepper
Chili 
1 tbsp. olive oil
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 (19 oz) can kidney beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 tbsp. chili powder
1/2 tsp. cumin
2 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. Hungarian paprika
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup tomato paste
1 red pepper, diced
1 green pepper, diced
2 medium onions, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 medium carrots, chopped small
1 tsp. granulated sugar
Freshly chopped chives for garnish if desired

Method
1. Preheat oven to 425F. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or silicone liner for easy clean up.
2. Add mushrooms, oil, salt, pepper, and thyme to a large mixing bowl. Toss until well combined.
3. Pour onto baking sheet in a single layer and roast for 15 minutes. Flip, and cook for another 5-10 minutes, or until mushrooms are nice and golden.

Chili 
1. In a large pot over medium-high heat, add olive oil. When hot, add in onions and carrots. Cook for 5 minutes. Add in the garlic and cook for another minute.
2. Stir in seasonings, making sure to add salt and pepper. Stir in tomato paste and cook for a few more minutes. Add in tomatoes, mushrooms, and beans. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes. Add in your peppers and sugar. Taste for seasoning. Cook for another 30-45 minutes, or until veggies are tender-crisp.
3. Serve as is, or with freshly chopped chives, sour cream, and/or cheese (my favourite topping!)

Note: You can make this meal in the slow cooker (but definitely still want to roast those mushrooms!) Save time by prepping the chili while your mushrooms are in the oven.


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Love this whole roasted mushroom chili?! Try some of these recipes:

A big thanks to Kacey for bringing such a lovely, vegetarian comfort to our tables! We can't wait to see what she has in store for us next. Stay tuned!!

Be sure to follow along with Kacey online at The Cookie Writer, and on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram!

Guest Post: Cheese-Stuffed Sweet & Spicy Mushroom Meatballs by The Girl on Bloor

We have a guest in the kitchen! We welcome The Girl on Bloor back into our kitchen and we couldn't be more excited. Just in time for the holidays, Taylor is sharing a drool-worthy party app that will disappear fast! It may call for a double batch...



Hey everyone! Taylor here from The Girl on Bloor blog - I’m a full-time blogger that has lived on and off Bloor Street in downtown Toronto for the past six years. I just graduated with a Master’s degree in Journalism from Ryerson University, and have been developing recipes, taking photos and doing social media marketing for my own blog and other clients for the past year. It’s been an incredible journey so far, and I’m so excited to see what fun projects I’ll get to work on next!


It’s no secret that I’m a GIANT fan of mushrooms. I sneak some into just about every recipe I can, and they are a staple to have on hand in the fridge. I enjoy them year-round in a variety of recipes - anytime I have an excuse to whip up a delicious pasta, pizza, omelet or stir fry with mushrooms is a good day in my books. This mushroom meatballs recipe is a twist on one of my family’s favourite appetizers, and just one of the newest experiments I’ve undergone with my favourite veggie. I hope you love them as much as I do!


Cheese-Stuffed Sweet & Spicy BBQ Mushroom Meatballs
These Cheese-Stuffed Sweet & Spicy BBQ Mushroom Meatballs make the most delicious appetizer for your next potluck or party - just make sure to have plenty of these on hand because you’ll run out quick!

Prep Time: 15 mins | Cook Time: 15 mins | Serves: 20 meatballs

Ingredients
1 lb ground beef
1 package button mushrooms, finely chopped
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 small yellow onion, grated
¼ cup parmesan cheese
¼ cup breadcrumbs
2 tsp ketchup
1 tsp Dijon mustard
1 egg
1 tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
10 mini buffalo mozzarella or bocconcini balls, sliced in half
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp hot sauce
1 tbsp honey
1 cup sweet and spicy BBQ sauce
20 toothpicks

Method
1. In a large mixing bowl, combine all ingredients except for cheese, olive oil, hot sauce, honey and BBQ sauce.
2. Take about 1-2 tbsp of meatball mixture and form it around each cheese ball half.
3. Heat olive oil in a large frying pan on med-high heat, then add meatballs. Fry for 10-12 minutes until meatballs are fully cooked and browned on the outside.
4. Meanwhile, mix hot sauce, honey and BBQ sauce together.
5. Remove meatballs from heat, then transfer to a large bowl. Toss in BBQ sauce mixture until fully coated.
6. Serve immediately on a platter with toothpicks inserted. Meatballs can also be prepared ahead of time and reheated in a 375F oven for 15 min.


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If you like this recipe, you may also want to try:
-One Pan Creamy Chicken with Mushrooms and Quinoa
-Creamy Portobello Mushroom Soup
-Blended Meatballs with Spicy Sriracha Aioli

As always, thanks to Taylor for sharing her mushroom-love and sending such tasty recipes our way! These mouthwatering mushroom meatballs are going to be a hit at holiday get-togethers.

Follow along with Taylor at The Girl on Bloor, and on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram!