About the sauerkraut – turns out its much easier than I thought and though it takes some time its all in the subtlety. I’m going to run a few test batches using different combinations of vegetables and spices and I’ll get back to you. Meanwhile, here is a nutrient rich and delicious recipe for the mushrooms in your box.

Mushrooms have many health benefits, for more on that check out our Good Food Health blog, and can be eaten raw or cooked. This recipe combines the fleshy chew of mushrooms with the pop and crunch of spiraled quinoa. Quinoa is an ancient grain dating back more than five thousand years to the vast and vibrant Inca civilization of South America. It is a great source of protein and provides all the essential amino acids to make it a complete protein. It also contains no gluten and is easy on the digestive system.

Quinoa has a nutty flavor and can be enjoyed as a hot grain or cooled for a tabouli-type salad. One of my favorite recipes combines quinoa, basmati, millet and barley for an intense pilaf. This particular recipe is perfect for a side dish, a main course or stuffing for peppers or roasted tomatoes. The Marsala wine pairs well with the mushrooms and is tempered by the soy sauce, which also provides virtually the only sodium in the dish, besides the pinch of salt for the grain.

For the base to the mushrooms, onions, garlic, shallots or leeks will all work. Use what is available. I just used a little less than half a yellow onion and it was delicious. You may have to add a splash of olive oil after you add the mushrooms, but don’t over oil, they should be lightly coated, but not greasy.

The other addition is the greens and they can also be a wide variety of ingredients. I used arugula and merely folded it into the quinoa right before I added the liquids, this allowed it to lightly wilt, but not over cook. If you’d prefer chard or kale, you’ll have to adjust the cooking times to match the texture you’re looking for. I’d add the chard when the mushrooms are about half way done and the kale could be finely chiffoned and added about the same time.

Whatever your ingredients, this recipe creates a healthy, delicious and satisfying meal that will please everyone.

1 cup red quinoa
2 cups water
pinch of sea salt
2 T olive oil
3 T onion, leeks or shallots, minced
1 t fresh thyme
1/2 lb. Cremini mushrooms, chopped
1/4 cup Marsala wine
2 T Soy sauce
3 cups chopped greens, chard, kale or arugula
1/2 t whole fennel seed, crushed
1/4 cup fresh cilantro, chopped

Add quinoa and salt to two cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and cover. Cook until all water is absorbed. Fluff with a fork and set aside. Warm a heavy bottomed skillet over medium high heat. Add olive oil, when hot add onions and saute until translucent and just lightly beginning to brown. Add mushrooms and toss to coat, add a splash more of oil if necessary, sprinkle on herb. Saute for another 3 to 5 minutes, or until tender. Toss in quinoa and mix in greens (if using spinach or arugula, if kale or chard mix in and cook till tender before adding grain). Add fennel seeds,  marsala and soy sauce. Cook until liquid is absorbed, 1 to 2 minutes. Garnish with chopped cilantro and serve.  Makes 3-4 servings.

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