My longtime family friend Kathy is an amazing cook. She has a real gift and whenever my family gets word that Kathy's doing the cooking for a get-together, there is 100% attendance (no small feat). A long time ago I remember Kathy making these amazing stuffed mushrooms, and marveling at its paucity of ingredients. Technically, just three (but I added in the garlic for fun).
There's really no excuse not to try this amazing recipe - great for hors d'oeuvres or a potluck PTA meeting. Thanks for the recipe, Kathy! For those who can't live without a recipe card, there's a similar version here.
Start with the basics. I used two packages of fresh whole mushrooms, the regular size (any bigger and they won't be bite-sized, which is the whole point!). Pork sausage (mix it up with different varieties of sausage, like italian sausage, or if you don't eat pork then experiment with ground beef as well). I chose Jimmy Dean all natural pork sausage. And then good old cream cheese. I'll mention the garlic later.
De-stem the mushrooms and wash them. De-stemming them can be tricky because the point is to get the stem completely removed so you have a little bowl to stuff. I find that swiftly twisting the stem with one hand while supporting the mushroom cap in your other does the trick pretty nicely. But then there's always brute force if it doesn't come out in one piece. Little buggers.
Next, brown the sausage in its wrapper. Just kidding.
This picture reminds me of the cookie-dough scene in Clueless.
Thoroughly brown the meat. Here's where I added some diced garlic for even more flavor, but you don't have to. I also added a bit of salt and pepper since my sausage seemed to be the plain jane kind.
Once it's thoroughly browned, transfer to a bowl (minus the grease/fat left over - you can discard that). Add the cream cheese in small to medium cubes to make it easier to cream and get melty. Mmmm!
Okay, I know this doesn't look appetizing yet (unless you are a canine) but trust me. The taste makes up for it.
Pop 'em in the oven on a cookie sheet for 10-15 minutes at 325°F.
They start to shrink and turn dark and release a lot of juice. That's when you know they're almost ready! I also turned on the broiler for a few minutes at the end to get the tops crispy.
Bite sized morsels that are an explosion of deliciousness in your mouth. Admittedly, they're not very colorful, but some of the best foods out there aren't. I guess you could always add some chopped parsley or other herbs to the mixture if you were dying for color.
The possibilities are endless with this filling. You can add different ingredients every time and I guarantee you'll be a huge success every time!
While I frown upon [houston]'s use of a fork to eat my finger food creation, they are admittedly as easy to eat with a fork (mass shoveling into the mouth becomes inevitable) as they are with your fingers!
For the main course we whipped together a fresh pizza.
Because we didn't have enough cheese and meat and grease already on the menu.
And then we dug in. Pour yourself some vino, turn on the History channel (or CNN or E! or whatever floats your boat)--and enjoy!