Garlic Mushrooms with Sherry on Toast
This classic appetizer or side dish that’s a natural with grilled steaks or kabobs usually calls for cream. While mushrooms are the main player in this recipe, the real stars are the sweet, nutty flavors of the sherry. I use sherry in many recipes that call for white wine and I prefer the subtle sweetness of cream sherry over dry sherry. Despite the fact that it is “sweeter” than dry sherry, it’s not the thick sugary sweetness of the classic desert wines. It’s also my preference when a recipe calls for Chinese wine. No need to invest in a good bottle of cream sherry for cooking. There are two or three brands of cream sherry easily available wherever wine is sold that are perfect for cooking.
For this recipe choose whatever good fresh mushrooms are available. Fresh wild mushrooms, although a little more difficult to come by, are also very good. A combination of both fresh and wild would make a very impressive appetizer or late night snack. To make this even more elegant serve over squares of crisp squares of puff pastry that have been split. Pair with a green salad and they make a quick, light vegetarian lunch or supper.
3 plus 1 tablespoons butter
1 large clove garlic, mashed
1 lbs fresh mushrooms—(cremini, porcini, baby Portobello, button or a combination)
2 tablespoons fresh Italian parsley, coarsely chopped
¼ cup cream sherry
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
Fresh ground black pepper to taste
2 slices toasted good white bread
If needed, clean mushrooms of any dirt. Slice thickly and quarter if using very large mushrooms. Over medium high heat the butter until it foams up and just begins to turn brown. Remove from the heat for 2 minutes and add the garlic. Stir for 1 minute, return to the heat and bring the heat back up in the pan. Add the mushrooms but do not stir, continue to cook without stirring for 1 minute. After 1 minute, still over medium high heat stir fry the mushrooms until they start to soften and are lightly brown in places.
Add the sherry and stir fry until most of the sherry and any liquid from the mushrooms has evaporated. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter, salt & pepper to taste. Toss till the butter just melts and coats the mushrooms and remove from the heat. Off the heat, stir in the parsley and serve right away over warm toast.
The mushrooms can be made ahead, refrigerated and gently re-heated when needed. If you are feeding a crowd and need to increase the recipe make sure to cook each batch separately so the mushroom don’t steam in their own moisture. Makes 2 servings
Garlic Mashed Potatoes and Mushrooms
3 lbs peeled & cubed waxy potatoes (Yukon Gold or any red skin variety)
2 cloves garlic, peeled
4 tablespoon butter
½ cup heavy cream
½ teaspoon salt
Place the potatoes and garlic cloves in a large pan and cover with salted water. Bring to a boil, cover partially and cooked for 20 minutes or until soft.
Drain well. Add the butter and cream and with an electric beater mix on high heat till smooth and creamy. Serve plain or topped with Garlic Mushrooms (above recipe). Serves 4.