Winter Vegetable Stew/Pie

Winter Vegetable Stew/Pie Category Pasta 
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Ingredients And Procedures

-----Stock----- 1/2 cup dried vegetable soup mix

3 cup slightly aged chopped white mushrooms

3 cup water

-----Stew----- 1/2 rutabaga -- halved then thinly s

1 cup white mushrooms -- slightly aged, halve

6 small shitake -- coarsely chopped

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt and pepper to taste 5 garlic cloves -- finely chopped

1/2 cup dry sherry

1 medium yellow onion -- cut into large piece

1 medium carrot -- peeled, 1/2" slices

2 medium russet potatos -- in 1/2 of 1/2" slice

1 medium fennel bulb -- quartered, in 1/2" s

2 tablespoon fresh thyme -- chopped or 2 tsp dri

2 tablespoon fresh marjoram -- chopped or 2 tsp dri

2 tablespoon fresh parsley -- chopped or 2 tsp dri

This began last night as an effort to make the Winter Vegetable Pie recipe

in the _Fields of Greens_ cookbook just acquired (and thanks to those who sent advice on the book last month). As usual, however, we varied a great

deal, so the result is greatly different from the book's--but was wonderful. We realized that the recipe started with "Mushroom stock," which would take 3 hours to make. Since it was already 7 in the evening, that was out. The celery root we thought was in the vegetable bin was a rutabaga; we had six shitake to use up. So we improvised: Stock: Gently simmer, until reduced to about 2 cups liquid.

Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large skillet; add the mushrooms, pinch of salt, 2 or 3 grinds of pepper. Sear the mushrooms over high heat

until golden. Add half the garlic and deglaze the pan with half the sherry. When the pan is almost dry, transfer the mushrooms to a bowl. Heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in stew pot and add the onion, pinch of salt, 2 grinds of pepper; saute until onion is transparent. Add the remaining garlic, rutabaga, carrot, potatos, and fennel, saute for 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms, herbs, and the reduced stock. Cover and simmer until vegetables are soft and flavors melded, about 30 minutes over

medium/medium low heat. Serve over grain, pasta, or polenta (we used a mixed spiral spinach pasta and basmati rice left over from previous meals), with crusty bread, bread sticks, or pretzels. The _Fields of Greens_ book takes its mixture, pours it into a 9 inch round baking dish, then covers it with a white pastry cover, with an egg wash on it (there goes the vegan listing!), then bakes in 375 degree oven for 40 minutes. Our variation worked well; we ate at about 8:45 (which is fairly normal for us), a rich and warming stew with the temperature outside at -5, wind chill -37. We'll try some different root vegetables next time, and perhaps add tofu slices as well.

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