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Mushrooms & Vitamin D

Well, if I’d written this yesterday – like I had intended to – I’d be telling you how Fall had come to the country. That my yard was full of leaves and there was a hazy look to the distant horizon. But, since I’m writing this today, I’m thinking that I was completely wrong – summer is still very much here. Mainly due to the fact that the thermometer on the back porch is registering 105. The grass in the front yard is crunchy and I’m having to water plants that are decidedly droopy.

But, with Labor Day this coming weekend – I have hope that we’ll soon be getting some cooler days.

Let me start by saying that David reads a lot on the computer. News, financial stuff, health, politics, etc. He noted that recently he’s been reading a lot about the benefits of Vitamin D. First thing that popped into my mind was MILK! YUCK!!!! I hate milk. But, I do know that Vitamin D is good for you. But where can you get it other than ‘fortified’ MILK and sunshine?

In addition to doing some searching on the net, I was surprised to see a box of mushrooms at the grocery store with a label that read “High in Vitamin D”. Was that a coincidence or what?! I read the propaganda on the box, and sure enough this particular type of mushroom was 100% Vitamin D. Needless to say, I brought a box home. I’ve learned to check the box info, it seems that not all of the mushrooms at the store were 100% Vit D.

Now I love mushrooms – so this was really great for me …. but not so good for David. He HATES mushrooms. But, since he wanted to get more Vitamin D into his diet, he agreed to try them. Of course, this got me to thinking on how to incorporate mushrooms into our diet in fashion where David would eat them …. and at the same time enjoy them as much as possible. Came up with the following homemade dishes:

  • Mushrooms sautéed in butter with grilled steaks
  • Smothered hamburger steaks and gravy
  • Stew of any kind
  • Soups
  • Pizzas
  • Spaghetti sauces
  • Lasagna
  • Omelets

The first dish I whipped up was smothered hamburger steaks. Served them with rice and he actually enjoyed them. Had enough left over for another meal.  For the left-overs, I added in about 2 heaping tablespoons of Onion Dip (I don’t like the flavor of sour cream) and three chopped up green onions and presto – another meal – only this time served it with buttered noodles. A quick easy meal full of Vitamin D. I plan on trying mushrooms in some of the other dishes next week.

The recipe for the mushroom-smothered hamburger steaks is below. However, since it was something I just ‘fixed’ up, you may find you will need to adjust some of the ingredients  to suit your taste as I rarely  measure anything when I’m cooking.

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound lean hamburger meat formed into ‘steaks’
  • 4 ounces mushrooms (half of the box)
  • 8 oz. chicken broth
  • 1 package brown gravy mix
  • Salt & pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. In a large, heavy skillet, make a roux of equal parts oil and flour. Remove from the heat and add in the hamburger steaks – turn each one after about 30 second on each side. You want them coated in roux.
  2. Return skillet with roux and steaks to heat (medium), add half of the chicken broth and mushrooms
  3. Cook steaks covered until clear juices can be seen when pressed. You may need to add a little water if the ‘gravy’ becomes too thick. Don’t worry, the water will cook out if you get too much.
  4. In a separate bowl, pour the remainder of the chicken broth and add in the packaged brown gravy mix. Stir with fork until there are no lumps
  5. Add gravy/broth mixture to the steaks in skillet
  6. Stir until even you get an even consistency
  7. Season to taste with salt and pepper

Tips:

 If the gravy is too thick add water and 1 teaspoon of chicken base (keeps the flavor from becoming diluted).

If the gravy is too thin – mix 1 tablespoon corn starch with apporximately 1/3 cup water and slowly add in until thickness you want is reached.

Enjoy!

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