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This pantry-friendly mushroom, white bean and rice skillet is all about umami

Aaron Hutcherson

THE WASHINGTON POST – A hearty, filling, one-pot meal can be a lifesaver on busy weeknights, and this recipe is no exception.

Two pantry staples – canned beans and rice – form the base of this dish, and it’s bursting with mushroom flavour thanks to the pairing of canned fungi and a retro recipe shortcut: condensed cream of mushroom soup.

You’ll start by sauteing a diced onion with canned mushroom pieces and stems in olive oil. Dried thyme, black pepper and garlic powder complement the mushrooms and diced onion beautifully, filling your kitchen with an alluring aroma as they mingle in the pan.

The canned condensed cream of mushroom soup doubles down on the fungi’s earthy umami flavour.

My first recipe test stopped there, more or less, and while I enjoyed the taste of my new creation, I couldn’t help but wonder: Could it be more? Then I remembered the leftover bottle of Worcestershire sauce I purchased to make Cincinnati Chili.

Mushroom, white bean and rice skillet. PHOTO: THE WASHINGTON POST

It’s not a regular part of my cooking arsenal – anchovies are a traditional component of the condiment and I have a fish allergy, however, there are now vegan versions that I can enjoy – but using it reminded me that a couple of tablespoons are a magic bullet for adding umami and pizazz.

A few dashes later, I found it gave just the right amount of oomph my palate was looking for.

After the ingredients have simmered and the rice is steamed and soft, scoop the beautifully beige masterpiece into bowls and top with French’s Crispy Fried Onions – which I’ve now taken to eating like potato chips – for a bit of crunch.

This one-skillet pantry meal is hearty and filling thanks to beans and rice.

– Two tablespoons olive oil
– One can mushrooms pieces and stems, drained, rinsed and patted dry
– One small yellow onion, diced
– One teaspoon dried thyme
– Half teaspoon fine salt, plus more to taste
– Half teaspoon ground black pepper, plus more to taste
– Half teaspoon garlic powder
– Two cups water
– One-and-a-quarter cups long-grain white rice, such as basmati, rinsed
– One can white beans, such as cannellini or Great Northern, drained and rinsed, or one-and-a-half cups cooked white beans
– One can unsalted condensed cream of mushroom soup
– Two tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
– French’s Crispy Fried Onions, for serving

In a large skillet with a lid, heat the oil over medium heat until shimmering. Add the mushrooms, onion, thyme, salt, pepper and garlic powder and cook, stirring regularly, until the onions begin to soften and turn translucent, seven to 10 minutes.

Add the water, rice, beans, soup and Worcestershire sauce, if using, and bring to a simmer, scraping up any bits that may be stuck to the bottom of the pan. Reduce the heat to low to maintain a simmer, cover and cook, stirring regularly so the bottom of the pan doesn’t burn, until the rice is al dente, 15 to 20 minutes.

Remove from the heat and set aside to steam the rice until soft, about 10 minutes. Taste, and season with more salt and/or pepper, as desired. To serve, spoon into bowls and top with French’s Crispy Fried Onions.


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