This recipe is in partnership with the Idaho Potato Commission. Thank you for supporting the foods and brands that support The Wimpy Vegetarian blog.
It’s that time of year when party invitations show up, and we plan intimate get-togethers of our own.
It’s interesting to me that as we march into the darkest days of the year, we become our most festive. We are at our most sparkly, over-the-top socially engaged at a time that thousands of years ago, we were at our quietest. Or so I imagine.
Maybe we reached out to each other in the extended darkness for reassurance and communion. Maybe the gradual re-lengthening of the days, symbolizing hope, was the magic that spurred celebrations. We made it through another dark season, we thought.
I wonder what it was like in those earliest gatherings. Did everyone gather around a huge bonfire for both warmth and light? Did they visit each other in thatched homes in the evenings after a day of toil? The only thing I’m certain of is that any gathering they did likely involved food. There’s nothing like sharing a meal together to create a feeling of community and connectedness.
This holiday season, when friends visit, this little appetizer will welcome them to our home and our table. I made it a few months ago for my friends at the Idaho® Potato Commission, and now, with the winter holidays upon us, I want to share it with you too.
Tips on Roasting Mushrooms
- Mushroom hold a lot of moisture, so it’s important to carefully remove their gills under their caps. Just scrape them out with a small sharp paring knife.
- Gently rub the mushrooms clean of any dirt and debris using a paper towel. Try to avoid washing them in water.
- A long slow roast of at least 30 minutes brings up the flavor of the mushrooms and the balsamic vinegar dressing.
Tips on Making Miso Mashed Potatoes
- I boil the potatoes in their skins to prevent them from absorbing too much water.
- A ricer is my favorite tool to use for mashing potatoes. It prevents lumps and promotes a consistent texture.
- Yukon potatoes are generally the best for mashed potatoes, and they’ll work well in this recipe. But I used russets for a little more structure since I was scooping them into the mushroom cavities. Here’s a link to the potato ricer I use:
- Purchase Idaho® potatoes if you can. The texture of potatoes grown in Idaho’s special lava soil is so much fluffier!
Miso Mashed Idaho® Potato Stuffed Mushrooms
Miso Mashed Potatoes
- 2 large Idaho® russet potatoes,
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 3 tablespoons white miso paste
- ⅓ cup finely chopped shallot
- 2 tablespoons half & half
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons thinly sliced chives
- Preheat the oven to 375˚ F, and line a baking sheet with foil or parchment paper.
- Twist the mushroom stems to remove them, or use a paring knife. Reserve for another use. Gently scrape the dark gills with the tip of a paring knife to remove as many as possible without damaging the mushrooms. They hold a lot of moisture. Turn the mushrooms upside down and gently tap, to allow the scrapings to fall out. Gently rub each mushroom with a towel to remove any dirt and debris.
- Whisk together the balsamic vinegar, oil, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Carefully toss the mushrooms in the dressing to completely coat, and place them upright on the prepared baking sheet. Bake for 30 minutes, turning the mushrooms upside down halfway through.
Miso Mashed Potatoes
- Place the potatoes in a medium pot and cover with well-salted water. Simmer for 20 - 25 minutes, or until tender. Peel and slice in half.
- Either mash or rice the potatoes using a potato ricer. Add the butter and miso and thoroughly mash. Stir in the chopped shallot, Half & Half, salt, and pepper.
- Scoop 1 tablespoon of miso potatoes into each mushroom cap (or whatever amount makes sense for the size of the caps). Keep warm in the oven on a low temperature, or in a warming drawer until serving.
- Sprinkle a few chives over the tops of each appetizer just before serving.