Why I Am Posting These Recipes

I believe that it is healthier for an individual and for the planet to reduce the consumption of animal products in the human diet. However, I love to eat all kinds of delicious food, and find it really, really difficult to go totally vegetarian. Also, my family protests if I serve too many vegetarian meals in a row. So I am committed to making an effort to move towards a vegetarian diet without wholly doing so. I will post recipes several times a week that represent my philosophy of eating well, eating healthy, eating local. Most recipes will be easy to prepare, as I have a busy life. So I expect my followers to be people who love to cook and eat well, want to try to help the planet through their eating (by eating local foods and trying to reduce the use of meat in our diets), and have many other things to do each day besides cook.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Wild Mushroom Broth

This broth can be used in place of beef broth or chicken broth in soups and sauces, in case you are a meat eater who wants to try to eat fewer animal products to help save the planet.  If you are a vegetarian, you probably already know about substituting vegetable broth for meat broth, but maybe this will just add something to your repertoire.  The mushrooms give it a rich, meaty flavor.  I used the parts of the leek that I usually throw away for the broth, since I discard all the solids after extracting their flavors.  This seems economical and green (as it is green to use rather than throw away).  My next post will be for a mushroom sauce to serve with pasta, which uses this broth.  Stay tuned!
about 1 cup mixed dried mushrooms (porcini, wild forest, shiitake)
enough boiling water to cover in bowl (about 2 cups)
about 3 TBS olive oil
½ large Vidalia onion, chopped into chunks
2 garlic cloves, pressed
green top and bottom stem of 1 leek
3 carrots, chopped
2 bay leaves
1 TBS herbs de Provence
1 ½ tsp cabernet sauvignon-infused sea salt (or plain sea salt, if unavailable)

Soak dried mushrooms in bowl with boiling water to cover for about an hour.
Heat olive oil in large pot and sauté Vidalia onion until just beginning to brown.  Add garlic cloves, then leeks and carrots.  Pour in 10 cups water and dried mushrooms and their soaking liquid.  Add rest of herbs and vegetables.  Bring to boil.  Simmer for 2 hours.  Strain.

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