The Secret Ingredient

Inspiration for Everyday Cooking

Take the Veggie Pledge: Try Mushrooms!

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Baby bellas!

The February Veggie of the Month is the mushroom!

My kids happen to love mushrooms, but because of their soft texture, they aren’t always a favorite among children.  When creating the newest recipe for the Fuel for Learning Partnership this month, I decided to use my favorite trick for getting kids to eat veggies.  It is simply that just about anything with cheese on it becomes more appealing to kids!

For this healthy Mushroom Quesadilla, I use Baby Bella mushrooms, which have more flavor and a firmer texture than typical button mushrooms, but you can certainly use whichever variety you’d like.  I buy mushrooms whole so they can be properly washed….it becomes very difficult to wash pre-sliced mushrooms, so I avoid them entirely.  You never want to soak your mushrooms in water while washing, as they will act like sponges and absorb the liquid.  That liquid will then come back out when it hits the heat, making for a soupier result than you bargained for.

Kids love finger foods, and quesadillas are a favorite.  By sauteeing some mushrooms and adding them to some cheese and salsa, you create a yummy filling for your quesadilla.  When sandwiched between two crisp tortillas and surrounded by cheese and salsa, the mushrooms are less pronounced and therefore less objectionable to kids.  Give it a try!  My kids love ‘em!  (Grownups can add some fresh cilantro too, which make these extra yummy!).

Together with your kids, take the “Veggie Pledge” at www.veggiepledge.org.

Mushroom Quesadilla

Serves 4

4 whole grain/low-carb soft tortillas

8 oz Baby Bella mushrooms (cleaned with a damp paper towel or brushed off ), sliced

4 oz shredded Monterrey Jack cheese

your favorite prepared salsa

olive oil/salt/pepper

In a 10 inch frying pan, heat a couple teaspoons of olive oil over medium heat.

Saute the mushrooms with a sprinkle of salt until softened.  Set aside.

Wipe out the same frying pan and return to burner.  Place one tortilla in the bottom (no oil), and place  1/4 of the mushrooms and 1 oz of shredded cheese on HALF of the tortilla.  Fold over.  Cook over very low heat until cheese is melted and bottom tortilla is golden.

Very carefully flip the quesadilla over using a spatula and your hands.  Heat until the second side is also golden. Cut into wedges and serve with salsa for dipping.

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Click here for more information about Tracy’s Connecticut cooking classes, or to read her The Secret Ingredient Blog.

4 Responses

  1. [...] each month. For this month’s recipe, Tortellini Soup with Escarole, go to Tracy’s blog, The Secret Ingredient, at http://blog.ctnews.com/holleran. The Veggie of the Month recipe will be posted the first [...]

  2. [...] each month. For this month’s recipe, Mushroom Quesadillas, go to Tracy’s blog, The Secret Ingredient, at The Connecticut Post. The Veggie of the Month recipe will be posted the first Thursday of each [...]

  3. You’re quite right! :) I don’t pick the “veggies”—I just write about them! Enjoy the fungi!

  4. Mike says:

    Shouldn’t the title read “Take the Fungus Pledge”?