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Long gone are the days when eating vegetables meant opening a can or taking a package out of the freezer. Its a wonder I love vegetables as much as I do given the way I grew up eating them. Although I still like many of them just steamed, broccoli and green beans come to mind, mushrooms unless mixed in a salad or omelet need to be cooked with other ingredients.  I have created several recipes around the use of 2 or 3 different types of mushrooms plus other ingredients. I will present one full version here followed by suggested variations. Not only do these recipes look and taste great, but they are all quick and easy to make.

The Ingredients:

8 oz of 2 or 3 types of firm mushrooms ( I used shiitake and baby bella)

1/2 large red bell pepper

4 large Brussels sprouts

2 TB Olive Oil

2TB Italian parsley

1/2 Israeli couscous

1c vegetable broth

1/2 lemon

Preparation:

Trim the bottom of each Brussels sprouts and cut in half. Cut the red pepper into bite sized pieces – 1/2 to 1 inch each. Slice the mushrooms into 1/4 inch slices.

Let’s get cooking:

Bring a pot of slightly salted water to a rolling boil for the brussels sprouts. Add the sprouts cooking them only until they turn bright grren and can be easily pierced with a knife. Do not let them get very soft. When done drain and rinse with cold water and set aside.

In another smaller pot add the vegetable broth and the couscous and cook until the couscous is al dente.

While the brussels sprouts and couscous are cooking, heat a saute pan with the olive oil using a medium high heat. Before adding the red peppers and mushrooms to the pan, lower the heat to medium. Stir frequently until the red peppers and mushrooms have softened a bit. Salt and pepper to taste.

Lower the heat slightly and add the Brussels sprouts and couscous to the pepper and mushrooms. Also stir in the parsely and squeeze in the juice of 1/2 a lemon.

Heat through and serve.

Variations:

Mushrooms – white, trumpet, portobella and crimini mushrooms all work well. Oyster and enoki mushrooms are to delicate and will stick to the pan.

Green Vegies –I also make this with asparagus, and think broccoli would work as well.

Red Peppers – Instead of red peppers for color use grape tomotoes. When making this substitution be sure to wait until you mix everything together in the saute pan before adding in the tomotoes. You just want to warm them.

Couscous – You can use various sizes of couscous grains, rice, or orzo.

Herbs – Instead of parsely and lemon juice I have used herbs de provence, or just increased the salt and pepper.

You may also want to consider adding toated pine nuts to any of these combinations.

Enjoy and let me know what combinations you try. I’d love to hear about new ones as well.

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