There is a direct link between eating healthier and a healthy planet. Scientists warn that 20% to 30% of global green house gases may be attributed to growing crops, raising livestock, fishing, and transporting all that food to our plates. This recipe seeks to satisfy meat lovers and convert them to more plant based meals that taste extraordinary. The added benefit of lowering man’s carbon footprint while cooking the way we love most: outside over a wood-fired OFYR grill makes the task easier. Mushrooms, with their umami savory flavor and rich, meaty texture are the perfect specimens for initiating a change in dietary behavior, one plate at a time. This made on the OFYR (easily adaptable to stove and oven), French melt-in-your-mouth riff, is full of traditional textural abundance, classic depth of slow cooked flavor, and is every bit as comforting and satisfying as the original Auguste Escoffier, beefy recipe. This is an abundantly rich and colorful recipe worthy of a family Sunday supper, an entertaining palate-pleasing and surprising main course, and a holiday feast option for vegetarians.
ingredients3 tablespoons olive oil 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms 2 pounds wild mushrooms, mix of portobella, cremini, shitake, maitake, or chanterelle, slice the cremini and cut the others into large bite-sized pieces Kosher salt Freshly ground black pepper 8 to 10 carrots, peeled and sliced diagonally into 1” chunks 2 yellow onions, sliced 6 medium shallots, cut into 1/4” pieces 1 cup sliced leeks, white and green part only 1 bay leaf 1 pound pee wee potatoes 6 cloves garlic, minced 2 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves 1/2 cup Calvados or Cognac 1 (750 ml) bottle of Burgundy red wine 1 tablespoon Japanese soy sauce 2 1/2 cups water 1 1/2 ounces vegetable demi-glace 2 tablespoons tomato paste 4 tablespoons unsalted butter 6 tablespoons all-purpose flour 1/2 cup parsley, chopped chive, snipped for garnish Rustic country loaf, sliced with olive oil brushed on top 1 garlic clove, peeled Sea salt flakes
- Preheat the oven to 250 degrees.
- Steep the dried porcini in a cup of boiling water for 15 minutes.
- In a Dutch oven over medium high heat, add the olive oil and mushrooms and sear the mushrooms unitl they are deeply browned and caramelized, about 12 to 15 minutes.
- Add the carrots, onions, shallots, pee wee potatoes, 2 teaspoons of salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper, and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
- Add the minced garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add the Calvados, stand back, and ignite with a match to burn off the alcohol.
- Add the wine, demi-glace, water, tomato paste, and thyme.
- Bring to a boil, cover the pot, and place it in the oven for 1 hour, or until the carrots are tender when pierced with a fork. Remove from the oven and place on top of the stove.
- Combine the butter with the flour and stir into the stew with the soy sauce. Taste for seasoning. Cook until slightly thickened, about 5 minutes.
- Just before serving, brush the top of each slice of bread with olive oil and rub the whole garlic clove over each slice. Toast on a baking tray in a 400 degree F. oven until golden brown, about 3 to 4 minutes. Sprinkle the bread with sea salt flakes and serve immediately.
- Fill bowls with stew, sprinkle with sea salt flakes and parsley, finish with a fresh grind of black pepper, and serve with the toasted bread.