chopped “liver”

The portobello mushrooms give this dish its meaty flavor but a mushroom is technically not a vegetable: it is a fungus. It is a powerful fungus, and one of the few plant foods that contain Vitamin D. Eating mushrooms can enhance weight loss. They contain natural antibiotics and boost the immune system, so this is an ideal pre or post-Halloween dish (and, it looks the part)! The onion is a veggie and the walnuts, a plant protein; serve it on a whole grain and you’ve got a whole meal.    


adapted from Joan Nathans Jewish Cooking in America

serves 4-6


½ pound Portobello mushrooms sliced into fine slivers

1 small onion, sliced into half moons

3 Tablespoons EVOO (Extra Virgin Olive Oil)

1 cup walnuts

Sea salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1 Tablespoon water



Place the walnuts in a skillet and dry-roast them, turning them so all sides of the nuts are heated. Allow them to cool and then chop them into small pieces (each piece should be about a quarter of a whole walnut). Wash the mushrooms well.


Slice them lengthwise into slivers about two inches wide;


then cut the slivers into two-inch-long pieces and set aside.


Slice the onion into half moons.


Heat a medium-sized stainless steel or cast iron skillet (note: do not use Teflon or any other treated metal) over a medium flame until the pan is very warm.Add the EVOO and swill it around so it covers the bottom of the pan.

Place the sliced onion in the pan and sauté them until they begin to wilt and become translucent and sweat – this should take about 4 minutes. Add a pinch of sea salt.


Add the sliced mushrooms and sauté them together with the onions until the onions and the mushrooms soft and lightly browned, about 15-20 minutes in all.Sprinkle more sea salt  and black pepper to taste.


Turn into a blender or food processor; add the walnuts, a bit more salt and pepper, and the water. Process until blended but not too smooth. Spread on a crusty whole grain sourdough bread, topped with fresh arugula or cress.


You may also spread in a celery “boat.”

©Nancy Wolfson-Moche 2013