With a lively dairy-free, nut-free pesto, these stuffed mushrooms make your appetizer tray memorable. Giving the leafy herbs a quick dip in boiling water followed by an ice bath helps the pesto keep its color. Both the pesto and mushrooms can be prepared and chilled separately up to 2 days in advance.
MAKES 8 TO 10 SERVINGS.
1 cup packed fresh basil
1 cup packed fresh parsley
1/2 cup unsalted roasted shelled sunflower seeds
2 tablespoons fresh thyme
2 garlic cloves, chopped
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 pound cremini mushrooms, stems removed
2 teaspoons canola oil or grape seed oil
1. Place basil and parsley in a heatproof strainer and dip the strainer into a pot of boiling water just until the herbs become bright green. Lift the strainer from the pot and immediately dunk it into a bowl of ice water for 10 seconds to halt the cooking. Drain well, spread the leaves on a clean dish towel and gently blot dry with another towel.
2. Place sunflower seeds in a food processor container and process until they are coarsely ground. Add basil, parsley, thyme, garlic, lemon juice and salt to container and blend into a coarse paste. With the machine running, slowly pour in the olive oil through the feed tube until incorporated.
3. Preheat oven to 375°F.
4. Arrange mushrooms, stem side down, on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and brush tops with oil.
5. Place in preheated oven and bake 7 minutes or until tender. Turn mushrooms over and dab insides with a paper towel to remove excess moisture.
6. Place mushrooms on a platter, stem side up. Fill each cap with pesto and serve.
Each serving contains 114 calories, 10g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 123mg sodium, 4g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 1g sugars, 3g protein, 2Est GL.
Each tablespoon of pesto contains 59 calories, 6g total fat, 1g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 0mg cholesterol, 75mg sodium, 1g carbohydrate, 1g fiber, 0g sugars, 1g protein, 0Est GL.
Contributing chef Matthew Kadey, RD is a registered dietitian and food writer. He is author of The Muffin Tin Chef (Ulysses Press), The No-Cook, No-Bake Cookbook (Ulysses Press) and, Rocket Fuel: Power-Packed Food for Sports and Adventure (VeloPress).Yields 10 servings