In the Pacific Northwest, we are blessed with an abundance of fresh mushrooms, both wild and cultivated. As we move into December, there are many holiday gatherings with friends and family. I like to bring a dish as a guest, or make several appetizers when hosting a gathering.
This stuffed mushroom appetizer has an Italian twist, and is healthy as well as delicious.
See one-page printable .PDF file with this story.
8-10 whole, large fresh mushrooms
4 Tbsp. Olive oil, divided
1 shallot or 1/4 sweet onion, diced finely
3 cloves of garlic, diced finely
1/4 cup of tomato sauce or commercially prepared marinara sauce
2 teaspoons Oregano, divided
1 teaspoon Paprika
1 Tablespoon Balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup Mozzarella cheese, shredded
Italian seasoning to garnish, optional
First gently wipe the mushrooms with a damp cloth to clean them. Then core the center of each mushroom and dice the removed stems finely, saving the caps.
Brush the inside of each mushroom cap with a little olive oil and sprinkle a little oregano over each. Place the
mushrooms on a baking sheet and bake in the oven at 350 degrees for 5- 10 minutes before removing. Let rest.
Meanwhile, to make the filling, place 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil in a frying pan and add the shallot or onion, when it begins to turn translucent, add the diced mushroom stems into the pan.
Then add the garlic and spices, cook for about 5 minutes on medium heat. Then add the tomato sauce and cook for another 2 minutes. Finally, add the balsamic vinegar to the mixture in the frying pan. Stir all ingredients together. Make sure to cook it gently for a few additional minutes to allow the mixture to thicken.
Stuff each mushroom cap with the filling, and top with shredded mozzarella cheese.
Return the baking pan to the 350-degree oven and bake until the cheese is melted, about 8-10 minutes. After removing the pan from the oven, garnish with a little Italian Seasoning if desired. Enjoy!
Shannon Beigert is a chef and baker who loves to entertain guests at her Olympia home. If you want to let her know that this recipe worked well for you, send her a note at shannon@theJOLTnews.com
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