Take a vegetable (in this case, some fungi), add your favorite herbs, and finish the dish with some wine. Does a better culinary prescription exist?

Choose either baby bella or cremini mushrooms for this recipe. Bellas offer a rich flavor and meaty texture. Creminis, with their brown skin and creamy tan flesh, provide a more pronounced flavor than their button-mushroom cousins.

Braising releases the mushrooms’ natural juices and brings out their earthy flavor. The red wine, garlic, thyme and poultry seasoning combine to impart a classic taste.

But it’s the herbes de Provence that provide the decidedly unique flavor in today’s recipe—a French/Italian spice blend that includes herbs like bay leaf, basil, fennel, chervil, sage, summer savory, rosemary, thyme, tarragon and lavender. You’ll find herbes de Provence in the spice aisle.

All of the ingredients should be available at your local natural and organic food store.

Braised Mushrooms with Herbs

Makes 4 servings

2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon minced shallots
1 teaspoon freshly minced garlic
1 pound baby bella or cremini mushrooms, cut in half and wiped clean with a damp cloth
2 fresh thyme sprigs
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence
1/2 teaspoon poultry seasoning
1/2 cup red wine (optional)
1/2 cup low-fat, reduced-sodium beef broth
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Salt (to taste)

  1. In wide skillet, heat oil over medium heat. Add shallots and garlic, and sauté until just golden (careful not to burn).
  2. Add mushrooms, fresh herbs, herbes de Provence and poultry seasoning. Increase heat to medium-high, and stir all ingredients so that mushrooms are well coated.
  3. Cook mushrooms for 5 minutes. Add red wine and cook for 2 minutes (if using); then add beef broth.
  4. Cover pan for about 10 minutes, and cook until mushroom juices have been released; then remove lid.
  5. Cook until liquid is almost completely reduced. Add pepper and salt to taste.

Per serving: 110 calories, 7 g total fat (1 g saturated fat), 6 g carbohydrate, 3 g protein, 1 g dietary fiber, 65 mg sodium

Recipe and photo courtesy of the American Institute for Cancer Research