Spinach Stuffed Portabello

I have confessed to some of my fellow bloggers about my recent ever so tragic decision – Piggy Tummy is going on a diet.  I had this initial fear that if I posted healthy foods, I would lose followers.  I figured the foodie blog world was all about cheesy, gooey, chocolatey, rich, artery clogging glory.  As I started collecting more fans and reading more blogs I have noticed I was all wrong!  Many of you post healthy food, some of you strictly healthy food.  I don’t plan on depriving myself and having it lead to failure (again…) I just wanted to assure that healthy food posts doesn’t mean loss of readers.  Now that my mind has been put at ease about that – I feel more confident sharing my new healthy concoctions!

My first goal for my diet was to add more vegetables.  I have never had an issue eating my vegetables, I do love them!  I just felt I was eating more wasted calorie items when I could have been filling up on vegetables.  My first goal was to have at least one meal a day that was vegetarian.  I will gladly admit that today all three meals were vegetarian! And yes…I am still alive.  I had been dreaming of this recipe for well over a week now.  When I worked all day, I thought of it – when I got home and was making dinner, I thought of it – as I got ready for bed, I thought of it.  It was time to bring this recipe to life!  I love portabello mushrooms, especially as a meat replacement.  It’s so meaty and packed with flavor that I knew it would be an excellent main dish component.  I knew I wanted to fill the mushroom, and not just make a burger out of it, or dice it into a pasta.  My idea was to stuff it with creamy spinach and bake it in the oven.  This is how it went down… (let’s hope I remember..this was a make-as-you-go kind of thing)

Spinach Stuffed Portabello

  • 4 nice sized portabello mushrooms, insides scraped out
  • 2 packages frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed of extra water (was cheaper then fresh, best I could do right now!)
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 4-5 small carrots, minced
  • 1/2 cup fat free half & half
  • 2 cups 2% milk
  • 1 cup reduced fat ricotta
  • 2 tablespoons Parmesan cheese
  • dill, 1 tablespoon
  • nutmeg, dash
  • garlic powder, 1 tablespoon
  • salt & pepper to taste

Topping

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon Parmesan cheese

First, scrape out the insides of the mushrooms.  Make it extra spacious for the deliciousness it is about to be filled with.  Using a spoon makes it extra easy!

Next, in a high sided skillet add olive oil, onion, garlic, and carrot.  Saute just until softened.  Add seasonings and spinach, mix until well combined.  Add cream and let reduce.  Once reduced add 2% milk.  Simmer until the mixture starts to thicken.  It will not be super thick as using heavy cream or whole milk but the spinach will start to sop it up.  Once it starts thickening a bit and comes to a simmer, add ricotta until it turns to a liquid.  Taste and adjust seasonings.

Since I have been doing well on my diet, and sticking to being absolutely behaved, I decided to treat myself to buttery toasty bread crumbs as my topping.  I know, I spoil myself!  I added just a small bit of butter to a skillet, added bread crumbs and a touch of Parmesan cheese.  I toasted them up until lightly browned.  Lightly olive oil a baking sheet and place cleaned out portabellos on the pan.  Stuff each mushroom evenly and top with crumbs.

Bake in the oven at 350º until the mushroom has clearly started to shrink in size and has started to turn a dark brown.  I believe mine cooked around 30 minutes.

To serve alongside with my mushrooms I sauteed fresh green beans with button mushrooms and canned stewed tomatoes.  I didn’t want a tomato sauce with the portabello because I didn’t want to take anything away from the creaminess of the filling.  The stewed tomatoes were an excellent addition without being overpowering to the main dish.  I have to tell you, this dish was absolutely mind blowing.  It was so creamy, so filling, and packed with so much flavor – I did not feel slighted in the least.  This is one of those recipes that will go in my “forever vault of deliciousness”.  I know the recipe doesn’t seem super unique, considering it’s a common item brought as a miniature size to most parties.  I have never thought to have it as a main dish, but I am so glad I did!

Try it, love it, lose weight!  I have lost 7 so far, any of you enjoying a diet too?