Archive for August, 2014

Mushrooms Make Back to School Time Trendy

Summer is quickly coming to an end and “back to school” time is in full swing. While the kids might be thinking about the latest trends in clothing and back to school gear, you might be thinking about what they’ll be eating for lunch. Council Representative, Kathleen Preis, tells us how the simple mushroom is making lunch menus across the country not only tasty this school year, but trendy.

Spicy Meatballs. Philly Cheese “Steak” Sandwiches. Chili con Carne. Sounds like the menu at a gourmet restaurant, while in reality this is what your kids could be dining on this school year. That’s right; all these trendy foods have made their way to school lunch trays across the nation, all because of mushrooms.

School Foodservice Directors everywhere have had an overwhelmingly positive response to the new blending concept – blending finely chopped mushrooms with ground meat – and have created healthier and trendier menu items for their school lunch programs.  “Mushrooms are on trend – the coolest thing to eat… We need to be on trend, we need to be serving those foods and meals that have a trendy buzz about them,” says Dayle Hayes, MS, RD, an award-winning child nutrition expert. And those buzz worthy, trendy menu items will have kids gobbling up their serving of vegetables!

So when your kids come home from school this year saying how much they loved that turkey burger with cheese and bacon, don’t fret; thanks to The Blend you can be sure they ate their veggies as well!

Let Mushrooms Beef up Your Taco Tuesday

Mushroom Blended Beef Tacos

The weekdays call for a variety of quick, delicious meals that the whole family can enjoy and Tuesdays are dedicated to tacos!

Using The Blend, Culinary Institute of America chef, Bill Briwa, and Mushroom Council president, Bart Minor, provide a closer look into how the taste and texture of mushrooms can spice up your Taco Tuesday menu:

Enjoyed crunchy and mild or soft and zesty, tacos bring a personal touch to family dinners with their variety of toppings and serving styles. The assortment of ground meats and fresh veggies that can be used to stuff your shells creates serious flavor combinations and makes tacos a great dish to experiment with using mushrooms. With the ability to chop and blend seamlessly into ground meat, mushrooms are a delicious addition to your taco night. The added flavor of minced mushrooms also allows you to decrease salt and seasonings making blend-tacos a healthier yet desirable option for the family.

Embrace Taco Tuesday with mushrooms and revamp your weekly taco night with new recipes:

Sausage and Mushroom “Brinner” Tacos – Blend sautéed mushrooms and savory sausage for a quick breakfast or dinner.

Mushroom and Beef Tacos with Salsa and Cotija Cheese – Enjoy the mushroom blend in this traditional beef taco topped with zesty salsa and sharp Cotija cheese!

Mushroom Bulgogi Tacos – Meaty mushrooms make these Asian-fusion vegetarian tacos a great meal for any time of day.

Taco Salad – Try this beef and mushroom meat blend atop taco fixings and shredded lettuce for a delicious dinner salad.

Mushrooms are even great as a garnish – slice them thin and sauté them in rich Chile seasonings for a tasty taco topper.

Celebrating Success: Recipe Redux 2014

From succulent portabella steaks to crunchy vegetarian nuggets, our 2014 Recipe Redux contest participants amped up the mushrooms and packed on the flavor in 37 delicious recipes! As part of the Council’s recent partnership with registered dietitians Regan Miller-Jones, Deanna Seagrave Daly and Serena Ball of The Recipe Redux, we tasked their community of 217 registered dietitians and health bloggers with revamping classic dishes by adding meaty mushrooms to the mix.

From blending fresh, diced mushrooms seamlessly with hearty ground meats in classic bruschetta and tender burgers to replacing meat altogether in crisp spring rolls and zesty, loaded nachos, the creativity was endless. The best part is that their efforts produced delicious, healthier alternatives to our favorite meals.

Let’s celebrate our contest winners!

Congratulations are in order to all participants as we celebrate all the amazing recipes we received featuring the mushrooms we all love. Thanks from the Council for a deliciously successful program!

 

See below for a full list of recipe entries


Mushroom and Chicken Quesadillas

Robyn from Add a Pinch shares a cheesy-good mushroom quesadilla recipe perfect for a quick after school snack or dinner for the family.

Being able to make a nutritious, delicious meal is always a priority and now with busy back-to-school schedules kicking up, making those meals quickly becomes important as well.

This easy mushroom and chicken quesadilla recipe is one that the whole family will enjoy, making it a win-win for busy weeknights! I like to cook the chicken ahead of time and store in the refrigerator for use throughout the week in recipes like this one. However, you can easily just omit the chicken, if you prefer, for a fast and fabulous mushroom quesadilla!

Here’s this simple Mushroom and Chicken Quesadilla Recipe. I think your family will love it!

 

Mushroom and Chicken Quesadilla

Makes 4-6 servings

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 pint sliced Portabella mushrooms
  • 1/2 medium onion, diced
  • 2 cooked chicken breast, sliced
  • 4 (10-inch) corn or flour tortilla
  • 1 tablespoon butter or olive oil
  • 1 (10-ounce) package pepper jack or mozzarella cheese, grated

Directions:

  1. Drizzle olive oil into a medium skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add mushrooms, onion, and chicken and sauté until chicken is heated through and mushrooms and onions have become tender, about 3-5 minutes.
  3. Remove ingredients from skillet and pour into a bowl for use in preparing quesadillas. Carefully wipe out skillet with a towel.
  4. Add butter or olive oil to skillet, over medium heat.
  5. Add one tortilla to the skillet, top with one-fourth of the following: cheese, mushroom, onion and chicken mixture.
  6. Cook until cheese begins to melt and tortilla begins to brown on the underside.
  7. Fold tortilla over to close. Remove from skillet and serve warm.

 

Dress Up National Sandwich Month with Mushrooms

Whether it’s the classic egg salad or the staple cheese burger, sandwiches have always been a universal food adored by all. From the messy and filling to the light and summery, mushrooms are a meaty, nutritious addition to any sandwich and provide a delicious way to help dress up your National Sandwich Month celebration! Start your morning with an egg and mushroom scramble between bread for an on-the-go breakfast or kick back after a long day with a juicy mushroom blend burger finished with your favorite toppings! Just as the variety of sandwiches are endless, so are the ways you can add the rich flavor and texture of mushrooms. Here are some of our favorite mushroom sandwiches for you to wrap your hands around this National Sandwich Month:

Steakhouse Breakfast – Fried egg, spreadable blue cheese, sautéed assorted mushrooms and steak strips on Asiago Cheese Focaccia will take your breakfast sandwich to new heights!

Mushroom Egg Salad –This classic comfort sandwich transforms with the addition of sautéed mushrooms and shallots.

Mushroom-Meatball Subs – Make the whole family smile with this easy, filling meatball sandwich, great for a quick lunch or dinner.

Sloppy Joes – Get messy with this childhood favorite – enjoy sloppy joes, and slip in an extra serving of veggies by blending the ground meat with mushrooms!

Mediterranean Mushroom Salad Croissants – Elegant and flavorful, this light Mediterranean mushroom salad sandwich is big on taste, but not the calories.

Classic Cheeseburger – Blending finely chopped mushrooms and lean ground beef makes this a cheeseburger like you’ve never had before.