Mushroom Stroganoff

1 pot and just about 10 ingredients. A quick and easy weeknight dish that’ll satisfy your pasta cravings without the guilt! A lighter, vegetarian spin on stroganoff - that can easily be made dairy free and vegan. <jump to recipe>

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And just like that, it’s 2017. Happy New Year, my friends!

Early January can bring a lot of pressure to set extreme New Year’s resolutions. Resolutions that temporarily fill the gym like a can of sardines, resolutions that involve crazy fad diets, and resolutions that encourage hard-and-fast rules with zero room for deviation. It can get a bit too crazy, a bit too fast - don’t ya think?!

This year I’m skipping the aggressive new year’s resolutions and opting for moderation. Partly because my fear of commitment makes it hard to get excited about doing (or eating) the same thing every day. Sure I love kale (a lot), but there’s no way I’m living on straight up kale for the next year. This lady still needs her pasta every now and again.

 Mushroom Stroganoff // Natural Girl Modern World // Vegetarian (Vegan option)
 Mushroom Stroganoff // Natural Girl Modern World // Vegetarian (Vegan option)

For days when your body is craving a nourishing and cozy meal, I encourage you to tuck into this vegetarian mushroom stroganoff. It’s comforting in the way that only carbs can be. And you can still feel good about it, I promise. Traditional stroganoff is loaded with meat, butter and sour cream. This lighter version switches out the meat for an extra big serving of umami-packed mushrooms (yay veggies). A combination of flour, vegetable stock and dairy-free milk forms a creamy sauce that covers every morsel of pasta. The sauce is so satisfying, it reminds me of a pasta-friendly mushroom gravy. And who doesn’t like gravy? Instead of butter, I use a neutral oil (like sunflower seed). These easy swaps make a better-for-you pasta that you can feel good about digging into. Because, it is the new year after all.

After a holiday full of cooking, I’m really digging the “one pot”-ness of this dish. Personally, I think there are some one pot recipes that could benefit from a second pot. But this one definitely isn’t it. And, given my approach to cooking has been described as a “mini hurricane” (direct quote from Anguel)...it’s always a bonus when kitchen cleanup is contained. As is often the case with one pot pasta dishes, you’ll want to keep an eye on your noodles as they cook. If it looks like they need a bit more liquid, add some more stock to loosen up the sauce and allow the noodles to cook. If you’re using egg noodles, they cook pretty quickly so make sure to stay on your toes! Overcooked noodles suck.

Season the dish with salt and pepper to suite your taste, because seasonings of vegetable stock can vary greatly by brand. For garnish, top with a generous serving of fresh parsley and a sprinkle of cheese. If you eat dairy, then hard Italian cheese (grated) works great. Vegans, opt for a dairy-free version, obviously (this brazil nut parmesan is delish).

 Mushroom Stroganoff // Natural Girl Modern World // Vegetarian (Vegan option)
 Mushroom Stroganoff // Natural Girl Modern World // Vegetarian (Vegan option)

MUSHROOM STROGANOFF

SERVES 4 (VEGAN OPTION)

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, divided

  • 1 large yellow onion

  • 1 lb / 455 g cremini mushrooms*

  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced

  • 2 teaspoons fresh thyme, picked

  • 3 tablespoons flour (e.g. spelt)

  • 3 1/2 cups vegetable stock**

  • 7 oz/200g dry egg noodles***

  • 1/2 cup plain almond milk

  • Salt and pepper

  • For garnish: Parsley & cheese (e.g. hard Italian cheese)****

Directions

  1. Heat a 1 tablespoon of oil in large skillet (or pot) over medium-high heat. While the pot heats, dice onion. Cook onion for 6 minutes, or until it’s translucent and slightly golden brown on edges. Meanwhile, cut the ends off the mushrooms and slice. Add mushrooms to the pot and cook for 8 minutes, or until mushrooms have released all their liquids and are golden brown.

  2. Reduce heat to medium. Add remaining 1 tablespoon of oil, minced garlic and freshly picked thyme leaves to the pot. Cook for 2 minutes. Add flour and mix well until vegetables are coated evenly. Then add vegetable stock. Scrape any brown bits off the pan and stir well. Bring liquid back to a boil.

  3. Once boiling, add noodles and non-dairy milk. Use spoon to distribute the noodles so they’re fully covered with liquid. Stir every couple minutes to ensure even cooking. Cook uncovered for 8-10 minutes or until the noodles are el dente. Keep an eye on your mixture: if noodles need more liquid, add extra stock in very small increments. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately and garnish with chopped parsley and cheese of your choice.

Notes:
*I use cremini mushrooms (brown), but you could also substitute white button.
**Use a good quality vegetable stock for the best flavor. Better than Bouillon is one of my personal favorites (e.g. ‘Better than Bouillon No Beef Vegetarian’ or ‘Organic Vegetable Base’).
***Also often labelled as “German Egg Noodles”. Note: They’re the flat and slightly wavy kind, not thin Spaetzle-type noodles. For a vegan option, use pappardelle noodles.
****Vegetarians, pay attention to labels, because many hard Italian cheeses are not vegetarian (e.g. Parmesan). For a vegan option, use a non-dairy parmesan cheese substitute (e.g. nut based or store bought).