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The heat has been intense this summer. The best time to be out is in the early morning when the grass catches the dew, the air is fresh, and the summer flowers are standing tall.

The meals I’ve been preparing have been light and fresh— plenty of cold soups, salads, fresh fruits, and some protein. A light dessert, such as a slice of raw cherry pie is the perfect complement to a light lunch or dinner on a hot day.

The best thing about this dessert is that there’s almost no cooking involved!

There are no added sweeteners, just the sweetness from the cherries and the dates in the crust.

Since this pie is made with cherries, it is high in the phytonutrient—anthocyanidins. These phytonutrients help hold our skin together—meaning less wrinkles! George Mateljan’s article, “Can You Tell Me Which Foods Promote Collagen?” lists the berries that contain anthocyanidins and its effects on collagen:

The anthocyanidins found in deep-colored, red-blue berries and fruits (including cherries, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries) have been shown to work in a somewhat different way. These phytonutrients help the collagen fibers link together in a way that strengthens the connective tissue matrix.

He also states in “Boosting Your Polyphenols” that cherries and other berries are high in polyphenols, a nutrient that has antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and anti-cancer health benefits:

In the fruit group, dark plums, cherries, dark grapes, and apples were found to be the most concentrated sources of polyphenols followed by berries. (Strawberries, blueberries, blackberries, raspberries, and cranberries were included in the group of berries that were analyzed.) Among the vegetables, rhubarb and red cabbage were standouts for total polyphenol content.

Another bonus to this cherry pie is the nutrient-dense crust made with walnuts, dates, and shredded coconut.

(more…)

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Stuffed Portobello Mushroom

Stuffed Portobello Mushroom

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms is a dish full of contrasts. It’s beefy, yet meatless; crunchy, yet velvety smooth; and sweet, yet savory.

This delicious dish is quick and economical as well as versatile. It can be served as the main dish with a side of vegetables or a grain, or on a whole grain bun, or cut up and placed in a salad.

This is a must try recipe. Your eyes and tastebuds will be enticed for a second serving, but you’re tummy will be satisfied after just one!

This recipe calls for soaked, dehydrated nuts. I usually soak a batch of nuts and dehydrate them each week for snacking and for recipes such as this one.

chopped scallions 064chopped walnuts and pecans 072sliced mozzerella cheese 065

Clean the Portobello mushrooms by wiping them with a dry paper towel. Wipe off any dirt. I know, you’re thinking they need to be washed with water! Mushrooms are very porous and will become soggy if washed with water. To preserve their texture and taste, wipe them with a dry paper towel. Then cut off the stems. Trim off the end that was not attached to the mushroom. Set the stems aside for later.

Spread a teaspoon or more of coconut oil in each mushroom. The coconut oil and soaked walnuts will provide the sweetness. Place them in a baking dish and bake at 375° for 7—10 minutes. I’ve used other fats such as ghee or sweet grass-fed butter, but the coconut oil is sweeter.

saute scallions 077scallions, mushroom stems, and nuts 083cover mixture with slice of mozzerella cheese 085

While the mushrooms are baking, chop one scallion per mushroom. Chop the mushroom stems. Lightly sauté the scallions and mushroom stems in a tablespoon of coconut oil. Add more coconut oil if needed.

While the scallions and mushroom stems are cooking, chop the nuts. I’ve used pecans, walnuts, and a combination of pecans and walnuts, but soaked walnuts provide the right amount of sweetness for this recipe. I prefer the taste of the the soaked walnuts in this recipe. They’re so deliciously sweet. My daughter, who has never liked nuts, loves the soaked walnuts. They’re also high in omega 3’s.

When the scallions are slightly soft, remove the pan form the heat. Add the nuts. Add salt and pepper to taste. I add a tiny bit more salt, because the mushroom juices will balance the saltiness.

Spoon the mixture into each mushroom. I like to pile it into each cap. Top each mushroom cap with a slice of mozzerella cheese.

Bake in the oven at 175 ° until the cheese melts. I’ve baked them at higher temperatures to get that golden color, but recently I’ve set my oven temperature a lot lower to preserve the nutrients of the nuts. Sometimes I warm up the oven at a low temperature, turn it off and set the tray of mushrooms in the oven for as long as it takes to melt the cheese.

Stuffed Portobello Mushroom 118

Stuffed Portobello Mushroom

Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms

Serves 4

Preheat oven 175° or higher

Ingredients:

1 scallion chopped,  per mushroom (4)

1/4 cup soaked nuts, chopped per mushroom (1 cup)

4 slices of grass-fed mozzarella cheese

Fat−grass-fed butter, coconut oil, or grass-fed ghee

1. Wipe each mushroom with a dry paper towel to remove any dirt. Remove mushroom stems and save for later.

2. Place mushrooms in a shallow pan. Spread a teaspoon of grass-fed butter, coconut oil, or ghee on each mushroom.

3. Place in a pre-heated oven for 7-10 minutes.

4. Wash, dry, and chopped scallions.

5. Slice off the end of the mushroom stem that was not attached to the mushroom. Chop up the stem.

6. Sauté chopped mushroom stems and chopped scallions in grass-fed  1 tablespoon of grass-fed butter, coconut oil , or grass-fed ghee until slightly translucent. Remove from heat.

7. Remove mushrooms from oven. Leave in baking pan.

8. Add chopped nuts to sautéed scallions. Add salt and pepper to taste.

9. Spoon generous amounts of the scallion, mushroom stem/nut mixture onto mushrooms.

10. Top each mushroom with a slice of grass-fed mozzarella cheese.

11. Bake in pre-heated oven until cheese melts. You may use a higher temperature. I now use a lower temperature to preserve as many nutrients as possible.

12. Remove from the oven when cheese is melted.

Enjoy!

Modifications and suggestions: Serve this as the main dish with a side dish of salad or vegetables; put the mushroom in a whole-grain burger bun for a delicious meatless burger; slice the mushroom and add it to a salad; vegans can substitute dairy cheese with soy, rice, or any vegan cheese; protein types can substitute ground beef, turkey, or chicken for the nuts or add more nuts; those allergic to nuts may substitute nuts with meat. If using meat, add curry, or some salsa to enhance the flavor. If you follow dietary laws, you may want to top the meat with a non-dairy cheese. Be creative!

This healthy, versatile, and frugal recipe is featured in Pennywise Platter Thursday in the Nourishing Gourmet.


Copyright 2009 by Nurturing Wisdom

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