Beef Mushroom Endive Taco Boats

This is a recipe for the Blend and Extend strategy – adding finely chopped mushrooms to ground beef to add more vegetables to your plate, extending portions and adding volume to meals.  

Recipe and photo by Raj of The Primal Desire.

Prep Time: 10 mins. | Cook Time: 20 mins.
Tip: This is great with aged cheddar or even blue cheese if you eat lacto-paleo. If not, it’s still a really nice balance of flavours to share with everyone!

Ingredients

2 lbs ground beef
6 large white or brown mushrooms (finely chopped)
1 red onion (finely chopped – ¼ cup put aside for salsa)
1 red chilli pepper (finely diced)
2 cloves garlic
3 heaping Tbsp taco seasoning (homemade or Paleo variety)
4-6 endives (leaves separated from base – see video above)
1 cup cherry tomatoes (finely chopped)
2-3 Tbsp ghee or grass-fed butter
Optional:
½ – 1 can black olives (chopped)
shredded aged cheddar or crumbled blue cheese (if lacto-paleo)
Pineapple Salsa
1½ cups pineapple (about ½ a pineapple – finely chopped – choosing & cutting pineapples)
¼ cup red onion (finely diced – from above)
1-2 Tbsp cilantro (diced)
1 avocado (cubed, salted and coated in lime juice)

Method

Pineapple Avocado Salsa (make this in advance so that flavours can blend):
1. Mix ¼ cup finely chopped red onion with pineapple, cilantro, and avocado.
2. Place in fridge until needed.
Endive Boats:
1. In a large frying pan or pot, melt ghee or butter over medium heat.
2. Add remaining onions and mushrooms, cooking until soft.
3. Add chilli, garlic and beef, stirring well to break up ground beef.
4. Once browned, mix in taco seasoning and olives.
5. Fill each endive leaf with ground beef/mushroom mixture.
6. If using cheese, sprinkle each endive.
7. Serve with pineapple salsa and cherry tomatoes to be spooned on top.

Beef and Mushroom Tortilla Pie

This version uses mushrooms and beef for the meat layer alternating with layers of beans, salsa and cheese. It’s definitely a meal in a slice.

Recipe and photo by eat. live. travel. write.

Prep Time: 40 mins. | Cook Time: 45 mins. | Serves: 6-8

Ingredients

For the meat:
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 shallots, finely diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 lb lean ground beef
1 lb mushrooms (I used crimini and shiitake)
2 teaspoons ground coriander
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
salt, to taste
For the beans: 
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 shallot, finely diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 can red kidney beans, drained
1 can black beans, drained
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon ground cumin
To assemble:
1 ½ cups salsa
12 6-inch corn tortillas
200g shredded cheddar cheese
To serve:
Sour cream
Salsa
Avocado slices

Method

Preheat the oven to 400°F.
To cook the beef and mushrooms:
  1. Place the mushrooms in a food processor fitted with a metal blade.
  2. Pulse until they are finely chopped.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat.
  4. Add the shallots and garlic and cook sauté until they start to soften but not brown.
  5. Add the mushrooms and sauté until they start to brown (at this point you might want to drain any excess liquid or you can lower the heat and continue to cook until the liquid is mostly cooked off).
  6. Add the beef, mix to combine well with the mushroom mixture and cook until the beef is browned.
  7. Stir in the coriander, cumin and red pepper flakes and season with salt, to taste.
  8. Set aside.
To cook the beans:
  1. In a separate skillet, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat and sauté the shallot and garlic until they just start to soften.
  2. Add the drained beans and cook over medium heat until they are soft enough to mash.
  3. Stir in the cumin and coriander then use a potato masher or the back of a soup ladle to gently crush the beans. You can leave some whole so the texture is not completely smooth.
To assemble:
  1. Cover the bottom of a deep round baking dish (9-inches/ 23cm in diameter with a capacity of 2L) with about ¼ cup of the salsa.
  2. Top with 2 corn tortillas – you will have to cut them to fit the shape of the dish so the bottom is completely covered.
  3. Top with about 1/3 of the beef and mushroom mixture, then ¼ cup of the salsa then scatter about ¼ of the cheese.
  4. Layer on 2 corn tortillas, cut to fit the dish, then top with 1/3 of the bean mixture, then ¼ cup salsa and more cheese.
  5. Continue to layer the tortillas, beef and beans until you have used up all the ingredients. Make sure the top of the pie is just salsa and cheese on a tortilla layer.
  6. Depending on the size of your dish, you will get 2-3 layers each of beef/ mushrooms and beans.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes at 400°F, then broil on high for 3-5 minutes until the cheese on top is golden brown and bubbling.
  8. Serve slices with a dollop of sour cream and some extra salsa and fresh avocado slices

Beef and Mushroom Tortiere

This Beef and Mushroom Tortiere houses all the flavours of a French-Candian classic, but bumps up the nutrition and stretches your beef budget with the addition of some fried mushrooms. 

Recipe and photo by Kelly of The Gouda Life.

Prep Time: 30 mins. | Cook Time: 1 hr. 20 mins. | Makes: 2 pies.

Ingredients

4 tbsp olive oil, separated
1.5 lbs crimini mushrooms, diced
2 lbs lean ground beef
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic
1 tsp allspice
1 tsp ground clove
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ground ginger
salt and pepper, to taste
2 9″ top/bottom pie shells (my favourite recipe here)
1/4 cup cream/milk/eggwash

Method

1. Put a heavy skillet or dutch oven over med-high heat and heat 2 tbsp of oil. Add in the mushrooms and leave them, without stirring, for 10 minutes. They should go from dry, to watery, and back to dry. You’ll need them to release all their moisture in order to crip up. Continue to cook, stirring if necessary, until mushrooms are golden brown and crisp (about 20 minutes total).
2. Remove mushrooms from the pan to a towel-lined bowl. Add in the other 2 tbsp olive oil and add the ground beef. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and fragrant.
3. While beef is cooking, add in garlic and allspice. Add in the mushrooms and diced onion.  Cook for 5 minutes more so onions can soften. Add a few pinches or salt and fresh ground pepper to taste. Let mixture cool completely.
4. Preheat oven to 375 and put the rack in the lowest position.
5. Roll your dough out and split the pie filling between the shells. Cut a vent hole in the middle of each pie. Brush with eggwash or light cream/milk and bake pies for 45-50 minutes or until tops are golden brown.
6. Slice and serve. If you want to save one, cover tight with plastic wrap and foil and freeze for up to 5 months.

Beef and Mushrooms Samosas

Charmian of The Messy Baker put the Blend & Extend method to good use in these party favourites. Her recipe for Beef and Mushroom Samosas would be a hit at any get-together. Try them yourself at home!

Recipe and photo by Charmian Christie of The Messy Baker.

Prep Time: 45 mins. | Cook Time: 25 mins. | Makes: 16 samosas.

Ingredients

Filling
1/2 pound mushrooms
1 pound lean ground beef
1 large onion
1 tablespoon canola oil
2 tablespoons grated fresh ginger root
2 tablespoons crushed garlic
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1 tablespoon ground coriander
1 tablespoon garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric
3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup peas, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup corn, fresh or frozen
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Wrapping
1 454 g package phyllo, defrosted
1/2 cup canola oil
1 tablespoon black sesame seeds (optional)

Method

Filling
1. Place the mushrooms in a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Pulse until the mushrooms resemble couscous, about 10 pulses. If you don’t have a food processor, mince by hand with a knife. Transfer the minced mushroom to a large bowl and mix with the ground beef.
2. Peel and quarter the onion before placing it in the food processor. Pulse until minced. Alternatively, the onion can be minced by hand.
3. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Cook the onions until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the ginger and garlic and cook 1 minute. Add the cumin, coriander, garam masala, turmeric, salt and dried chilli flakes. Cook 1 minute, stirring constantly to ensure the spices are well distributed.
4. Add the mushroom/beef combination and cook 5 to 7 minutes or until the beef is no longer pink.
5. Place the beef mixture in a sieve and allow to drain five minutes to remove excess liquid. Too much moisture in the filling can cause the samosas to burst while cooking. Transfer the strained mixture to a large bowl, stir in the lemon juice, peas, corn and cilantro. Allow to cool. The filling can be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days.
Wrapping 
1. When you’re ready to wrap the filling, preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Unwrap the phyllo and it lay flat. Cover it with a slightly damp tea towel to prevent it from drying out. Remove one sheet, and brush lightly with oil using a pastry brush. Fold in thirds lengthwise so you have a long, narrow strip three layers thick. Place 1/4 cup filling  at the bottom of the phyllo strip, about 1/2 inch from the left edge. Fold the bottom right corner over the filling to form a triangle. Fold the filling up the sheet of phyllo, maintaining the triangle form. Place on a baking sheet, brush with more oil and sprinkle with black sesame seeds, if using. Repeat with remaining phyllo and filling.
3. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown. Serve hot as is or with tamarind sauce.

Beef and Mushroom Meatball Sliders

Recipe and photo by Living Lou.

Prep Time: 10 mins. | Cook Time: 45 mins.

Ingredients

4 oz white button mushrooms
1 clove garlic, minced
1 lb lean ground beef
1/3 cup bread crumbs
¼ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 egg
2 tbsp +1/4 cup barbecue sauce
½ tsp red pepper flakes (can omit)

Method

1. Preheat oven to 350F. Grease a baking sheet with olive oil.
2. In a food processor, process mushrooms and garlic.
3. In a large bowl, combine mushroom mixture with beef, bread crumbs, parsley, egg, 2 tbsp barbecue sauce and red pepper flakes.
4. Using a standard ice cream scoop, scoop mixture into 12 even meatballs.
5. Brush with remaining ¼ cup of barbecue sauce.
6. Bake in oven for 35-45 minutes or until fully cooked.