Saturday, February 19, 2011

Stuffed Mushrooms--And the First Breeze of Spring.

Last Thursday morning, I went out to do some grocery shopping before a long weekend. It was a sunny and warm day, above 70F. On the way back I noticed in my neighbors' front yard a big bush covered with yellow flowers. I am sure it was not like that earlier in the day, because I would have noticed that. It has been a warm but a very windy week but it is only mid-February and this bush, the only one blooming in my whole neighborhood, screemed "spring!" Today, however, skies in DC are still clear and bright blue, but a strong wind, which cut off our power again last night, reminds us that cold days will be back tomorrow.

When I went shopping on that sunny Thursday, I bought some large white mushrooms. They were so fresh and smooth that I got a whole bag of them.
I thought that I would serve them whole to preserve their good looks. Right away I had just one idea--stuff them. I almost forgot that we used to do that often back home where white mushrooms have always been very popular and widely available. For some reason I thought about that dish on this dawn of spring, because we made it during this season, when fresh vegetables were not yet available. We filled mushrooms with egg stuffing and served them on Sunday brunches.

Stuffed Mushrooms

14 oz or 8-10 big stuffing mushrooms,
2 hard boiled eggs,
1 medium onion, tiny chopped
1 cup breadcrumbs,
1 egg,
3 tbsp chopped parsley,
salt and pepper.

1. Preheat oven to 370F.
2. Wash mushrooms, remove stems gently and throw them away. Using a melon curving spoon, or a small coffe spoon, scoop out the gills and a little bit of flesh underneath them to leave place for the stuffing. Save the scooped out parts.

3. To prepare the stuffing, chop finely the mushroom parts that you scooped out and place them in a medium bowl. Chop onions, parsley, hard boiled eggs and add them to teh bowl. Add breadcrumbs and one beaten egg, and season with salt (about 1/2 tsp) and pepper.
4. Stuff mushroom caps with the filling and place on a lighty buttered baking tin.

5. Bake for 25-30 minutes.
6. Serve warm with baguette or bread.

This is the bush that woke up for the spring last Thursday.