Mushrooms and Potatoes

Other than a tiny little bit of prosciutto, I have been meat free for the last two weeks. My vegie son and I are the only two people in the house – the carnivores are away – so it has been strictly the produce isle and farmers market for us. The challenges abound and the taste discoveries are endless. I say that, but have been caught more than once staring at a pile of vegetables thinking how on earth am I going to make this interesting. Sometimes you just have to wing it.

Yesterday, I felt like something hearty. I knew that we had potatoes and mushrooms, the combination of starch and protein would satisfy the hearty desire. I also knew that Russians have been eating that combination for years. The resourcefulness of a people when food is scarce is not to be underestimated. There is a story in my wife’s documentary “Forgotten Voices, Women in Bosnia” about how a woman during the war stretched an onion to feed her family for three days. Any dilemma that I might have pales in comparison.

This recipe turned out better than I expected. I was just trying to get something on the table along with a simple salad. What we got was a bit better than that so I thought I would share it with you. It is no gourmet extravaganza, but it is good food.


  • 4-5 Medium Golden Potatoes
  • 1 Onion, sliced
  • 3 Cloves Garlic, minced
  • 2 Tablespoons Fresh Rosemary, finely chopped
  • 15-16 White or Crimini Mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
  • 1 Cup Kalamata Olives, pitted and sliced
  • Butter
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt and Pepper


  • Chef’s Knife
  • Large Pan (Non-stick if it’s a really good one)
  • Medium Pot
  • Spatula
  1. Cut the potatoes lengthwise in quarters and parboil for 5 or 6 minutes.
  2. Let cool then cut into bite-sized pieces.
  3. Melt 2 tablespoons butter and add a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan.
  4. Sauté onions and garlic briefly.
  5. Add potatoes and mushrooms. 
  6. Salt and pepper liberally.
  7. Add the rosemary and stir in.
  8. Let potatoes cook until they start to stick. You want some browning.
  9. Add olives.
  10. Cook the whole mess for about 20 minutes.
  11. Check for seasoning

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