I’ve not been a fan of stuffing in turkeys, or outside of turkeys, at holidays; nor have I stuffed a lot of things. But I have been stuffing the occasional mushroom since the Colonel first introduced me to the idea of popping a little blob of bleu cheese and a dab of butter into a button mushroom and broiling it for a few minutes. What a great appetizer! So simple, so delicious. And in recent years I’ve been grateful for stuffing larger mushrooms, usually portobellos. When I was searching stuffed pepper recipes a few weeks ago I ran across one which used riced cauliflower instead of regular rice. I couldn’t find it again when I went to stuff these gorgeous portobellos for lunch today. But I riced some cauliflower, sautéed some kale, grated some Mexican cheese, chopped a Chimayo pepper, a Sirenevyi sweet pepper, and the first ripe tiny Tabasco pepper, and the last fennel bulb, and mixed them all together with one beaten egg. Oh, and some spices. I scooped some of the flesh from the center of each mushroom and stuck it in the freezer for stock later, then plunked the stuffing into the mushrooms, topped with grated mozzarella, and roasted them at 400℉ for fifteen minutes. To serve, I topped them with a roasted tomato and some crumbled bacon (the fat of which I’d used to sauté the kale). Not so simple, but not so hard either, and so delicious.
I roasted a bunch of ripe and extra-ripe tomatoes this morning, and when they cooled slipped them into a freezer bag. There are so many green tomatoes left on the vine, and I worry they won’t ripen before the first freeze. Already I’m bringing in Biko, as when the weather forecast says 46 it’s been 38 overnight, and the past two nights it’s predicted 42. Can’t take the risk of freezing the tortoise. He can stay out to about 40 degrees but can’t handle much time at anything much lower. And I wonder about the green tomatoes and peppers, whether with these abruptly cold nights they have just stopped ripening. We’ll know more later. Anyway, I’m grateful for stuffing. This one was low-cal and fulfilling.
And in other news… A friend’s sister and her family lost everything in two homes in Ft. Myers in Florida during Hurricane Ian. Storm surge to the ceilings. As climate chaos continues to fuel more destructive storms, fires, heat waves, etc., all of us will be touched from three or two degrees of separation to no separation at all. Sherry visited here a few years ago, a lovely woman and a fine artist. Her life’s work, not to mention her husband’s shop and her daughter’s home also, gone. We so often feel helpless when tragedy strikes. This feels like a good way to contribute my little bit to the herculean recovery efforts underway in Florida and the US southeast coast, donating directly to a family and knowing they will get every penny. If you feel so moved, please join me, and share this link: