Lloyd and I were at a restaurant called Matchbox with a group of friends and being the health conscious 30 somethings that we are we all ordered low carb, gluten free, vegetarian options. But at the table next to us came out a platter of sliders piled a mile high with shoestring fries. I have been wanting something like that ever since I saw them. So I created these mushroom and chicken meatloaf to replicate the sliders and baked spiralized beets and butternut squash into a semblance of shoestring fries. I have to say it really did hit the spot and I didn’t feel nearly as guilty as I would have had I eaten the sliders and fries at Matchbox.
To start I prepped my spiralized beets and butternut squash. Claire gave me a veggeti last year for my birthday and it is a stellar addition to my kitchen. I had spiralized the squash and beets earlier in the week and failed to get a picture. But here is what happens when the vegetti takes on a zucchini.
But back to my butternut squash and beets! The first thing I had to do was get the excess moisture off of them so that they would crisp up in the oven. I spread them out on some paper towels and sprinkled them with salt. I love how pretty and colorful they were.
Next I need to ready my mushrooms. Kroger has bins of mushrooms where you can pick out the ones that you want. I tried to find ones that were evenly sized and would be easy to stuff. I de-stemmed them and diced the stems up into small chunks to use later.
The last real prepping step was getting the meatloaf mix together. I cheated a bit and started off with some chicken Italian sausage. I removed the casings and then added in my own seasonings to amp up the tastiness of this!
I felt that should I mix in things to amp up the Italian seasonings already present in the sausage. So I chopped up some basil, scallions and sun-dried tomatoes as well as some garlic. I added in some shredded mozzarella and about half of those mushroom stems. I used an egg as a binder but no bread crumbs because of the low carb effort. I didn’t add in any extra salt, pepper or other spices because I’ve had these sausages before and they are pretty well balanced. But if you are using plain ground turkey then you would definitely need some.
I stuffed all the mushrooms with a heaping spoonful of the mix trying to spread it out evenly and then turned my attention back to the beets and squash. I wanted to wring the excess water out of the veggies so I placed another paper towel on top of them and tightly rolled them up. Then I spread them on a baking sheet and popped them in the oven before my stuffed mushrooms.
Everything came out of the oven and I plated them with “fries” piled on top of my “sliders.” It was definitely more colorful than the restaurant version. And I have to believe it’s a lot healthier. It also really satisfied my burger and fries craving which was the goal all along!
- 12 mushroom caps
- 1 package of Italian chicken sausage
- 1 egg
- 1 heaping Tbsp minced garlic
- 4 oz chopped sun-dried tomatoes
- 1/4 cup chopped basil leaves
- 1/4 cup sliced scallions
- 1/4 cup shredded mozzarella
- Salt, pepper and other seasonings to taste
- 1/2 cup spiralized beets
- 1/2 cup spiralized butternut squash
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Spread out squash and beets on paper towels or cheese cloth and sprinkle liberally with salt.
- Wipe mushrooms clean and pull stems off. Chop stems and set aside.
- Place mushrooms on a baking tray.
- Mix together meat, egg, garlic, sun-dried tomatoes, basil, scallions, cheese and seasonings.
- Scoop meat mixture into mushroom caps.
- Wring out squash and beets and pat dry.
- Place squash and beets on baking tray and place in oven on top rack for ten to fifteen minutes.
- Move veggies down to lower rack and stir gently to avoid breaking up strings.
- Place mushrooms in oven on top rack and cook everything for an additional 30-40 minutes.
- Plate with shoestring squash and beets piled on top of your meatloaf stuffed mushrooms.