Mediterranean Vegetable Stroganoff with Ricotta Cheese
This Mediterranean Vegetable Stroganoff with Ricotta and Parmesan Cheese is one of those dishes that I really hate calling Vegetarian for fear it would shoo some away. This is so good you’ll never miss the meat!
This recipe for Mediterranean Vegetable Stroganoff with Ricotta Cheese takes me back to a different lifetime. To a time when my children were small and I had so many friends with kids the same age.
When my oldest daughter Emily was not yet a year old, I enrolled her in a Mother’s Day out program. She had a chance to socialize with someone other than me and I had a morning each week for myself. You know, to grocery shop or get a haircut or even just to meet friends for coffee. The added benefit was meeting other moms of young children and I made some great friendships from that experience.
One of the best was with my friend Joyce. Bonded initially because we had both named our daughter’s Emily, we soon discovered that we also shared a love of reading and cooking and over the course of the years that we lived in the same town, we often got together to share food, fellowship and recipes.
Our children were best of friends too; the Emily’s got along great and we both eventually had another girl and we surely anticipated that Lauren and Kate would follow suit.
As often happens when young families are in transition though, we both ended up moving to different states. I went through a painful divorce and both the distance and life circumstances saw our long distance relationship eventually wane.
Yet…I never forgot Joyce; we had a special friendship at a very special time in our lives when we were having children and not a year went by that I didn’t think of her.
During the process of moving two years ago, I came across an old binder with a lot of written recipes and one of them was for this Mediterranean Vegetable Stroganoff that was a favorite that Joyce had made for us one evening when we were at their home for dinner.
I’ve had it on my mind since then to make it again and finally the time was right. This weeks theme for the Food Network’s #ComfortFoodFest is ‘Cheesy’ and the sauce for this dish absolutely complies; filled with Ricotta and Parmesan it is just that and is the perfect complement to the vegetables it surrounds with a rich and satisfying flavor.
I’m so glad I still have the original recipe from her; even though it’s in my handwriting, I remember her giving me the paper and writing it at her kitchen table (in the olden days before the Internet or blogs; this is how we shared!). Isn’t it amazing how one small thing can bring such a flood of memories?
It’s funny too that I recall loving it but not making it often since it seemed to take a lot of time. I did not have a Cuisinart when my children were small…it is amazing the quick work it made of slicing mushrooms, leek and carrots…it didn’t seem time consuming at all. What I was curious to see was if my more mature palate would love it as much as my memory did. 1981 was a VERY long time ago!
If possible I think I loved it more; I’ve grown especially fond of leeks and they are a big part of the flavor profile. Of course a Sherry cream sauce served over that pretty rice doesn’t hurt. The rice gets that beautiful color from the addition of Turmeric while cooking.
I can’t say the rice had much flavor from the Turmeric but that was fine, the sauce is so flavorful that I think just coloring the rice is enough and I wouldn’t want another flavor component to change one thing. This is not like any stroganoff you’ve ever had; I daresay if you’re like me, you’ll think it’s the best!
Making a recipe from someone that was my best friend at one time made me miss her and I decided to try Google and see if we could reconnect. I was unprepared and saddened to hear that she had passed away; she was far too young.
I remember so fondly what a wonderful sweet friend she was and of her girls, even though grown, now without their mom, and I know I will be spending some time trying to see if I can find them too. I’m more grateful than ever that I have this dish that reminds me of Joyce; I’ll celebrate her each and every time I serve it in my home.
This post is in memory of you Joyce, a wonderful friend that was in my life at such a sweet time…know you will never be forgotten. Joyce was so caring and full of life; she would not want a morose memory but one that is a reminder of those wonderful times and how much fun and laughter we always shared.
Here’s to you Joyce, I’ve shed some tears but I promise that it’s your smile I will remember every time I prepare this delicious dish.
PIN IT! ‘Mediterranean Vegetable Stroganoff with Ricotta Cheese’
Mediterranean Vegetable Stroganoff
- 3 c. broccoli bite size
- 4 medium carrots thinly sliced
- ¼ c. butter
- 1 lb. fresh mushrooms sliced
- 1 medium leek or 3-4 green onions sliced
- 1 clove garlic minced
- 3 Tbsp. regular or gluten free flour
- 2 c. half and half
- 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 1 tsp. bouillon or 1 cube vegetable or chicken
- ½ c. dry sherry or white wine
- ½ c. sliced ripe olives
- 1 c. sour cream
- 1 c. ricotta
- ½ c. freshly grated Parmesan
For Turmeric Rice:
- 2 cups rice
- 4 cups water
- ½ tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp chicken or vegetable bouillon
- Parsley for garnish optional
- Cook broccoli and carrots in boiling, salted water for 5 minutes or until crisp and tender. Drain.
- Melt butter and sauté mushrooms, leeks and garlic until mushrooms in butter until mushrooms are just tender.
- Blend in flour. Stir in cream, soy and bouillon. Cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.
- Add drained veggies, wine and olives. In small bowl, combine sour cream, ricotta and Parmesan. Gradually stir 1 cup hot mixture into cheese and then return to pan. Cook 3 to 4 minutes until heated. DO NOT BOIL!
- Prepare rice per package directions; adding turmeric and bouillon to water.
- Serve Stroganoff mixture over turmeric rice.
- Garnish with parsley (optional)
Beautifully written story from your life, Barb, and this “take” on Stroganoff is very appealing!! Pinned, and ill make certain that I pick up ricotta and sour cream this weekend!
Thank you Susan; it was sad but in some weird way also happy to have been reminded of Joyce and when we both had young kids; such a sweet time in our lives. This really is so very good; I hope you enjoy it too!
This looks so vibrant and yummy ♥
How sad the Joyce passed away just as you were able to track her down. But how lovely that you found the recipes she shared… a wonderful tribute to make and share the dishes with others. This one looks fabulous – all the flavors PLUS the ricotta and sour cream. Well, all of it. A great dish to get even the veg haters to eat. And I cannot wait to see your new house. Or visit your new house.
So so happy for you, Lauren’s well being and this great news on your home!! Yay Barbara 🙂
Breathing a huge sigh of relief for you and your Lauren… that’s my daughter’ name too. And sending warm blessings for your new home xox
A well worn recipe is a loved recipe. It’s sad when we lose touch with dear friends. So glad that Lauren is doing well and you’ll be settling in and getting your life in order soon 🙂 Can’t believe that you’ve been able to maintain a blogging schedule given the circumstances!
So true Priscilla…and so glad I tried it again; it is SO good. Someone here found my hidden cache; let’s just say I was NOT happy!! Guess I’ll have to make it again huh?
Two forks. Two plates. Looks like there’s room for me at the table. Couldn’t resist the joke. Happy to hear your daughter is doing well. That’s what is important. The new place will work itself out. I bet. GREG
I’ve been waiting…where the heck are you? 🙂
I am so happy to hear that Lauren is doing well and that you have found a new place to call home. I am selfishly hoping that your new ranch will be close by enough to me for a short drive to visit…tell me you are not moving too far away??
I just saw a recipe this morning for stroganoff in the latest Cooking Light magagzine. Your version with vegetables sounds wonderful.
Not too very far but a bit from here. The northern most tip of Castle Rock on Parker Road just past the Pinery. 30 minutes from my driveway here to the one there!
Charlie just golfed at the Pinery last week so I know exactly where you mean– beautiful views and open land but you are still within driving distance of citylife (should you want it!) I am so happy for you! Can’t wait to welcome you to your new home.
I think city life for me will now be Parker. 🙂 I’ve really never craved going downtown; if I were a restaurant reviewer this might be a stupid move but I’m not…unless Castle Rock and Parker are in the mix! We will definitely have a girls night out; Ansh even suggested a retreat and I’m up for that. I am so excited Holly…I’ve loved this house from the moment I first saw it and nothing else has come close; one was available without a $35,000 view upgrade and I took it! My yard will be tiny and I’m really OK with that. Enough for some small plot gardening but not the major work my other yard required. Now just fingers crossed that it will finish on time!
Sad to hear about your friend Joyce, but so glad to learn Lauren is making excellent progress! And your new house sounds great – I’d love to have a room right off the kitchen to take photos. That sounds wonderful. As does this dish – what a neat idea. Really good recipe, and such a nice way to remember your friend. Really absorbing post – thanks so much.
Did you wonder where the photo was? Hmm? Oh to be so busy that I scheduled it and not put it into draft. Talk about scrambling this morning when I realized my error! It really is SO good John; I’ve squirreled some away in the back of the fridge even. 🙂
Oh my, but what a bittersweet story. I am certainly sorry to hear of your friend Joyce’s passing. Some are taken far too young. Well do I remember my mother’s cry of “Where is the justice?” when my father succumbed to brain cancer at the age of 52 years. Sweet memories, however persist.
I do hope your daughter does well, and feels wonderful. Modern medicine is just amazing. I retired from nursing almost twenty years ago, and there are so many new advancements, I often feel as though I worked in the Paleolithic age.
Let me not forget this dish. I love the idea. I have got to try this. Thanks! And to all I say be well.
Lauren has benefited from her otherwise good health and her age; it was quite the shocker but she is doing well; thanks so much!
Mediterranean stroganoff – never heard of it but I LOVE the idea. I met my best friend through our daughters when they were five. We shared recipes (and everything else) until she died. I think of her every time I make her favorite recipes.
That’s one thing I love about the sharing of recipes in real life; I’m always reminded of who I got it from.
I wish we had one of your beautiful photos of this recipe to drool over. On second thought, I usually gain a pound or two just looking at them. I am so sorry to hear of your friends death, but I love that you have such fond memories and this wonderful recipe to remember her by.
Thank goodness Lauren is better and her treatments are winding up. It is times like these that make you realize how important good health is. I hope that this is all soon an unpleasant memory and you are all healthy, wealthy and wise sitting in your beautiful new home. I am so happy for you.
I wish that post that I thought was in draft form had a photo too; luckily I had taken the photos and I’ve got one with it now. Evidence of my scattered life? Probably. 🙂