Mushroom magic


By Jan Bilton

Once known as the ‘food of the gods’, wild mushrooms have been enjoyed around the world for thousands of years. However, not all of us wish to experiment with the wild varieties found in the countryside. It’s easier to have fun with the commercially grown varieties available from supermarkets and greengrocers.

Mushrooms are the ‘meat’ of the vegetable world. They are more closely related in DNA to humans than to plants. Just as with human skin, mushrooms can produce vitamin D by being exposed to sunlight.

Mushrooms flourish in the dark or the light as their energy comes from the growing medium not from photosynthesis as with green plants.


Mushroom stuffed capsicums

Serve as a light meal or as a main with extra vegetables.

2 small capsicums, halved lengthwise and seeded

1 tablespoon canola oil

200g Swiss brown mushrooms, diced

freshly ground black pepper to taste

2 cloves garlic, crushed

4 sundried tomatoes, drained and diced

25g walnuts, chopped

1/4 cup finely chopped parsley

dash chilli sauce

Place the capsicums in a shallow microwave dish and cook on high for 1-2 minutes or until softened a little.

Preheat the oven to 190°C.

Heat the oil in a non-stick frying pan. Sauté the mushrooms on high for 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and season. Add the remaining ingredients.

Fill the capsicums with the mixture and place in an oven-proof dish. Cover the capsicums loosely with foil. Bake for 20-30 minutes, until tender.

Great served topped with light sour cream. Serves 2.

  • Jan Bilton is a Cambridge-based, professional food writer. For more of her recipes visit her website here.

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