¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
1 lb. small button mushrooms, Crimini variety
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
3/4 cup mixed vegetable mirapoix
2 cloves of garlic, peeled and minced
¼ stick unsalted butter
2 to 3 lbs. Boston butt pork, finely cubed or sliced
Sea salt & cayenne pepper as desired
2 tsp. Frank Davis Pork Seasoning
1/8 tsp. fresh-ground nutmeg
3 whole sage leaves
4 cans turkey gravy
¼ cup tomato sauce
1 whole carrot, shredded
2 cups chicken broth, as needed, to replenish moisture as the pork browns
2 cans green peas, drained, buttered, and heated
4 cups prepared instant rice
Start off by placing a 12” non-stick skillet on the stove, pouring into it about a quarter cup of extra virgin olive oil, and bringing it up to medium heat.
Next take the small mushroom buttons and cut each one in half.
Then, about a handful at a time, drop the mushroom halves into the hot olive oil, agitate the skillet briskly to completely coat the ‘shrooms, then take a wooden spoon and keep them moving in the pan until they begin to brown around the edges.
At that point, push all the sautéed mushrooms evenly around the sides of the pan. Then add another small handful of uncooked mushrooms to the center of the pan. Agitate and stir them, too.
And when they take on the same color and doneness as the first batch, slide them up against the sides with the first batch. Continue this process a little at a time until all the ‘shroom are in the skillet and golden brown.
At that stage, take them off the fire, transfer them to a small bowl, and set them aside for a while.
Now, using the very same skillet, add yet another quarter cup of olive oil to it, place it back on the stove over medium-high heat, drop in the mirapoix of seasoning veggies along with the minced garlic, and fry down the seasonings until the onions completely clear and begin so soften. When they’re ready, set them off to the side, too.
The next step is to place a large oval roaster (like a Magnalite roaster) on the stove and turn the heat up to high. Then drop into the pot the unsalted butter and allow it to come to a sizzle.
In the meantime, while the butter is coming up to heat, spread the pork pieces out on a sheet of freezer wrap on the countertop and sprinkle them liberally with sea salt, cayenne pepper, and pork seasoning. . .along with a smidgeon of freshly ground nutmeg.
When you have the pork fully and uniformly seasoned, begin dropping it by small handfuls into the roaster oven, and stirring it continuously—and cooking it!—until each of the pieces begins to brown beautifully. Just be careful not to crowd the roaster! In other words, proceed by dropping in uncooked but seasoned pork pieces into the already cooked pork in the roaster, combining them together as the dish builds. The trick? Take your time getting all the pork into the pan and frying it down; otherwise the pork could very well turn out as tough as leather.
When you’re satisfied that you’ve done the meat to your liking, add to the pot and stir together the mushrooms, the mirapoix, the sage leaves, the turkey gravy, the tomato sauce, and the shredded carrot.
All that’s left at this point is to stir into the entire mixture only enough chicken broth to create a semi-thick sauce with, say, the consistency of melted ice cream and to keep it at that consistency until the stew is fully cooked. In other words, add a little broth as needed throughout the cooking process.
Then when you’re ready to serve, place a heaping chef’s spoon full of rice into a deep soup bowl, ladle the stew over the rice, and top with a spoonful or two of the hot green peas to give the dish the crowning touch. From that point on, it’s simply a matter of mixing everything together and taking the first big bite!
Crimini mushrooms can be eaten raw or cooked, and can be substituted for white mushrooms in any recipe. Immediately before using fresh Crimini mushrooms, clean them gently with a brush or cloth towel, and remove the base of the stem. When serving Crimini mushrooms raw, sprinkle them with lemon juice or vinegar to prevent them from turning brown.
When buying fresh Crimini mushrooms, select mushrooms that are intact and firm. Avoid mushrooms that are wrinkled, slimy, or spotted. Crimini mushrooms will stay fresh for up to seven days when stored in the refrigerator in a paper bag; avoid storing them in plastic bags. Crimini mushrooms can also be frozen if necessary.
You can buy the mixed vegetable mirapoix in the produce section of most supermarkets. It’s pre-chopped onions, celery, garlic, bell pepper, carrots, green onions, and parsley packaged in either one-cup or two-cup plastic containers.
You can make “buttered peas” by stirring into a pot of simmering hot green peas (petit pois is best) a number of pats of butter to taste about 5 minutes before service.