Monday, January 25, 2010

Spinach Stuffed Mushrooms

My grandmother recently celebrated her 80th birthday and we threw a huge surprise party for her with tons of friends and of course food. One of the fastest dishes to disappear was my spinach stuffed mushrooms. They are super easy to make and I had a little left over filling which our guests enjoyed spreading on crackers and bagel chips. A fun dish to make, easy dish to make and a very flexible recipe.

You will need: (recipe will feed 10 people as appetizers)

~ White Button Mushrooms (20 of various sizes )

~ 5 garlic cloves, crushed

~2 cups fresh or frozen spinach ( but we all know how I feel about frozen when fresh is available), chopped

~1/2 cup extra virgin Olive Oil

~(opt.) 1 1/2 Parmesan freshly grated fine

~6 slices cooked bacon ( I use a vegan sub.), chopped

Preheat oven to 355d and start to gently rub down the mushrooms with a barley damp paper towel. If you rinse them, the mushrooms will become slimy and start to break down in the oven. Cleaning them whit a paper towel is just as affective but keeps them intact and less slimy. When you have rubbed them all down to clean them, pull out the stems and set aside, you will use these in the filling.

Set the mushrooms aside and get out your food processor. In a large mixing bowl gather the oil, garlic cloves, spinach, bacon and the mushroom stems. Mix and add a little salt and pepper. Place a usable amount in the processor. Not too much for the poor think to bog down but enough to really get it mixed. Process everything until you come out with a paste adding a little more oil if it is too thick. It is so important to taste the filling before you fill the mushrooms. Every one's taste is different so you may want to alter or add a little more of something...

Once you have found your filling's balance, stir in half of the Parmesan and using a little spoon or pastry bag, fill the mushrooms. Leave them a little concave to allow the rest of the parm to be sprinkled on top or if your sprinkling skills are unbeatable round them off and sprinkle away! Bake until the cheese on top is browning or until the mushrooms are browned. Once out of the oven you can even sprinkle with some extra bacon for flavor and show! Serve warm!

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