Friday, September 27, 2013

Plant-Based Dining: Pomegranate-Glazed Portobello Mushrooms with Sauteed Garlic Kale!

I like to be courted (doesn't every girl?). That's why, even after 5 years of dating, Adam and I have date night every Thursday. We've agreed that unless there's a wedding, funeral or act of God, we WILL be on a date come Thursday night. One of the perks of living in NYC is that we never have to go to the same restaurant twice.

But last night, we decided that our refrigerator was too full to dine out. So we decided to cook together at home using a recipe I adapted from the book Superfood Kitchen by Julie Morris. This plant-based dish can be whipped up in 30 minutes and is so good that it might even trick the staunch meat-eaters in your life. Plus, you can dress it up all fancy-like, making it worthy of a dinner party or, in our case, date night!

But most important to note is the fact that this dish is full of vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and good-for-you fats!

Ready to get cookin'?

To make the pomegranate glaze:  Fill a measuring cup with 1 cup of pomegranate juice.
Grab your army of ingredients: 1/2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves (chopped),  1/4 tsp. sea salt, 1 Tbs. sugar, 1/2 Tbs. coconut oil and 1 Tbs. red wine vinegar.
In a small saucepan, combine the pomegranate juice with the ingredients above. I recommend using a saucepan (vs. the saute pan pictured here - sadly, our saucepan is in need of replacement).
Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a low simmer and cook for 20 minutes to reduce into a thick sauce (if it's not reducing properly at the end of 20 minutes, boil again for 2 minutes. Turn the heat off and set aside.
While the glaze is doing its thing, you can start multi-tasking. Wash and chop 1 head of kale. Then peel and thinly slice 2-3 cloves of garlic. In a saute pan with a little coconut oil (or oil of your choice), saute the garlic for 2-3 minutes, then add the kale and saute until soft, adding a splash or two of white vinegar right at the end of cooking.
Now for the portobello marinade. In a measuring cup, combine: 1 tsp. red pepper flakes, 1/4 cup olive oil, 1/3 cup red wine (yes, it's OK to have a glass as you cook) and 1/2 tsp. sea salt.
Now peel and thinly slice 1 large garlic clove. Sprinkle a dash of sea salt on top and use the flat part of your knife to push against the garlic over and over again until it becomes a slimy paste. Then add it to the other ingredients and mix well.
Remove the stems from 4 portobello mushrooms and wash to remove any dirt.
Brush both sides with the marinade.
In a large saute pan over medium-high heat, cook the portobellos in a bit of coconut oil and the remaining marinade for 5-7 minutes (starting with the underside facing up, then flipping halfway through).
When they're done, the mushrooms will have soaked up all the liquid. 
If you're feeling fancy, remove the seeds from a whole pomegranate... so (you'll have plenty of leftovers to eat for dessert or use in the morning with breakfast!)
To plate, make a bed of sauteed kale in the middle of your plate, top with a portobello mushroom, drizzle with the pomegranate glaze and sprinkle with pomegranate seeds for garnish!
Dinner fit for a king (or queen!).
I think this dinner proves that eating healthy can still feel indulgent! Hope everyone has a wonderful weekend!

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