Mushroom Strata

We had some ends and bits of bread that were languishing in a brown paper bag in the cupboard for a little over a week (maybe more).  I was going to throw it away today (cabinet cleaning), and discovered that it wasn’t moldy, just rock hard.  I decided to be extra frugal and figure out a way to use it in tasty dinner.  I know the list looks long, but this strata does not have that many ingredients.  I threw in the sour cream because we had some leftover in the fridge and the splash of red wine is one that has been sitting around for cooking various things.  The bulk of this meal can be made from just about any sauteed vegetable, eggs, milk and stale bread.  Cheese helps.  Cheese always helps.

Mushroom Strata


  • 1 lb white mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • olive oil
  • salt
  • pepper
  • red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 cup seitan or veggie sausage, chopped (omit or use real meat if you like)
  • splash of red wine or water or broth
  • 4 cups cubed stale bread
  • 1/2 cup sour cream or yogurt (light/low-fat is fine)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup soy milk (or regular)
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese, grated

To Do:

  1. Heat a bit of olive oil in a large frying pan and saute the onions for about 5-7 minutes (until they brown).  Add garlic and saute for another minute or 2.  Add a splash of red wine or other liquid if the mixture is sticking to the pan.
  2. Add the seitan/sausage and cook until browned.
  3. Stir in the mushrooms and cook, covered, over low heat for about 10 minutes.  The mushrooms will release a lot of moisture, so peek in on them every couple of minutes.  When they look golden and delicious, remove the lid and let the liquid cook down a bit.
  4. While the mushrooms are cooking, mix up the eggs, milk, sour cream and a bit of salt, pepper and the red pepper flakes (depends on how salty/spicy you like things).
  5. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  6. Place the bread bits in a dutch oven or casserole dish.
  7. Pour the hot mushroom mixture over the bread bits and mix it all around.
  8. Add the liquid ingredients and combine (this can sit overnight in the fridge and made for breakfast or dinner the next day).
  9. Sprinkle the cheese on top and feel free to add more or use a different kind of cheese!  The cheddar was left over from someone bringing it to a dinner party.  I bet Gruyere or goat cheese would be amazing with the mushrooms.
  10. Put a lid on the dutch oven or just cover tightly with tinfoil.
  11. Bake for about 45 minutes.  Uncover and bake for another 15-20, until the top gets all bubbly and brown.
  12. Serve!  Excellent for dinner with a green salad or as an amazing brunch dish.

Yucca con Mojo, plus Chipotle Tofu and Corn

Put this together last night with the yucca I bought last week at the coop, as well as some of the stuff I picked up last night at Pioneer. I prepared the yucca along the lines of the classic Cuban dish – Yucca con Mojo. The tofu was marinated in some chopped chipotle peppers, cilantro, lime juice, and salt, then sauteed until brown. The corn was rubbed with olive oil and salt, wrapped in foil, and oven roasted. We served it Mexican-style (elote del mercado) with sour cream, chile powder, and a dash of grated cheese.

Simplified Yucca Con Mojo

1 large yucca root, peeled and cut into 1″ chunks
1 medium onion (preferable red, but any will do), rough chopped
4 cloves garlic, diced
1/3 cup cilantro, diced
juice of 3 limes
olive oil

1. Heat a few Tbsp of oil in a skillet, then sautee the onions until they begin to soften and become transparent.
2. Add the yucca, cilantro, and garlic, a dash of salt, and half the lime juice. Stir, cover the pan, and allow the yucca to cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occassionally. Add the rest of the lime juice about halfway through.
3. When the yucca can be easily split with a fork and develops a flaky texture inside, it’s ready to serve.

Spending Updates

We had a whirlwind weekend (got taken out to lunch by the Wandering Foodie, more on that later) and haven’t had a chance to update on our spending.

In addition to Phil’s $23 spent at the Coop last week, I spent $3 at the Pioneer buying bread, garlic and an avocado.  So let’s up the total to $26 with a reserve of $4 for this week.

Going in with $34, we’ve already spent $13 of it at the Pioneer on red lettuce, chipotles, seltzer, cilantro, yogurt, plaintains and queso fresco.  $21 to spend!  We are in desperate need of spices and some tea and dried beans.  Yipes!