Sunday, 25 July 2010

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Healthy Mushroom Pasta Sauce/Champignon Sauce/奶油蘑菇酱 [nǎi yóu mó gu jiàng]


Serves 4

Preparation and Cook Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients:
- 500g shitake mushrooms (I prefer to use a mixture of fresh shitake than portabella mushrooms for more taste)
- 25g of frozen shrimps deshelled type (this is used to replace chicken stock called in many recipes for soup)
- 2-3 stalks celery chopped
- 1/2 stalk of leek (white portion) chopped
- 2 large onions diced
- 1 clove garlic chopped
- 1/4 cup white wine (optional)
- 3 TBS ground oatmeal (to thicken the sauce)
- 1 cup low-fat fresh milk
- 3 TBS cooking oil or butter
- 2-3 slices of organic chedder cheese that you slice yourself (optional)
- 1/2 cup of natural yogurt, greek yogurt or fromage frais (optional)
- Chopped parsley or chives for garnish (optional)
- Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:
1. Heat pan with oil or butter and fry garlic, leek, celery and onions on high heat until lightly brown, then add mushrooms and continue to fry on medium high heat now until the mushroom turns brown. Then add the frozen prawns.

2. Add salt, pepper and white wine and boil for 1 minute.

3. Meanwhile mix well ground oatmeal and milk in a separate container and then add it into the pan after the wine has been boiled for 1 minute.

4. Stir for 2 minutes or until the sauce thickens

5. Reduce heat and add cheese until melt.

6. Stir in yogurt (be careful not to boil)

7. Garnish with parsley and serve with pasta or potatoes

Nutritional Value:
Shiitake mushrooms are an excellent source of selenium and a very good source of iron. They are also a good source of protein, dietary fiber and vitamin C.

Mushrooms contain higher concentrations L-ergothioneine, a powerful antioxidant, than either of the two dietary sources previously believed to contain the most: chicken liver and wheat germ.

Testing mushrooms consumed in the U.S., the team found that shiitake, oyster, king oyster and maitake mushrooms contain the highest amounts of ergothioneine, with up to 13mg in a 3-ounce serving. This equals forty times as much as is found in wheat germ. This is followed by portabellas and criminis hand lastly white buttons. White buttons contain up to 5 mg per three ounce serving-12 times as much as wheat germ and 4 times more than chicken liver. The good news is L-ergothioneine is not destroyed when mushrooms are cooked.

In addition, shitake mushrooms are said to revigorate the immune system and good for the heart.

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Additional Comments:
I was searching the internet for healthy mushroom recipes, but could not find any. This is my own creation. Many recipes call for the use of heavy cream, or if not, flour to thicken the sauce. I don't like to use flour in my cooking... as I don't think it will taste good. I found a way to thicken the soup that is delicious and nutritious by using oatmeal ground into powder. Thus, I substitute the flour used in many recipe with ground oatmeal. I like to add cheese into my mushroom, because it enhances the taste as well as giving it a good rich texture. Also it provides lots of calcium to the sauce. This is a very healthy and nutritious mushroom pasta sauce. It is creamy and thick, without having to use heavy cream :-) Daddy likes it very much, and J too! However, if you are used to sauce with cream, you most likely will not like this sauce.
I realise that it is very important to use a good cheese. I use ordinary slice cheese, and it turned out rubbery in texture. I found this organic cheddar cheese that really enhances the taste of the soup:
References:
http://whfoods.org/genpage.php?tname=foodspice&dbid=122

http://www.mahalo.com/how-to-make-mushroom-soup

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