Barbara Greenlief of Winchester, Va., wrote that she could not find a recipe for preparing portobello mushrooms and wanted help.
Beth Hunter of Timonium responded with a recipe and noted that her family members were big mushroom lovers. "According to our philosophy, if a recipe doesn't call for mushrooms, it probably should. Enjoy."
Portobello Mushrooms Stuffed With Spinach and Sun-Dried Tomatoes
Serves 2 as an appetizer
6 ounces small portobello caps (about 6 to 8)
1/2 cup of your favorite vinaigrette
1 small yellow onion, chopped
1 clove garlic, crushed
2 cups fresh spinach, washed, dried and stemmed
3 whole sun-dried tomatoes in oil, chopped
1/4 teaspoon lemon juice
Tabasco sauce, to taste
salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Marinate mushrooms in vinaigrette 4 to 6 hours. Grill mushrooms, 6 to 8 minutes on a side until juicy and slightly softened, and set aside gill side up to cool.
Put a small amount of olive oil in a large pan and saute onion and garlic until tender, about 3 to 5 minutes. Add spinach, tomatoes and lemon juice. Saute 3 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle with Tabasco and salt and pepper, to taste.
Place cooled mushrooms top side down on a baking sheet and sprinkle with half the Parmesan cheese. Mound spinach mixture in mushrooms, dividing equally. Sprinkle with remaining Parmesan cheese. Place pan under broiler and broil for 5 minutes. Remove to serving platter and serve at once.
Tester Laura Reiley's comments: "This recipe is a lot of work for just a handful of mushroom caps, but the results are delicious if you're a mushroom lover. I would suggest grilling over low heat - because portobellos are so juicy, they can cause grill flare-ups. Begin grilling them gills down, flipping them at around 3 minutes so that as they get juicier the top side is toward the flames. This way the juices are more contained.
"Before marinating, brush off the mushrooms with a damp paper towel rather than wetting them entirely. Cut the stem rather than popping it out, which wastes lots of edible mushroom."
Mrs. Jessie Thomas of Ellicott City writes that she is looking for a beef-stew recipe cooked in the oven with tomato soup. "Anyone heard of this one?"
Samonne L. Roseberry of Baltimore is searching for a recipe that "I found in a McCall's magazine in the 1980s. And after moving three times, I have lost this delicious Honey Wheat Bread recipe which requires no kneading. It called for wheat bran, but I used wheat germ with no ill effects. It was baked in a 3-quart casserole dish. I have found similar recipes but not as good as this one."
If you are looking for a recipe or can answer a request for a hard-to-find recipe, write to Ellen Hawks, Recipe Finder, The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278. If you send more than one recipe, put each on a separate sheet of paper with your name, address and daytime phone number.