Friday, October 14, 2011

Sunday, October 2 - Shitake and Crimini with Goat Cheese Crostini

Shitake and Crimini Mushroom Crostini with Goat Cheese
We're having people over for the first time in a while. Well, since our 'farewell to freedom' / baby home from NICU party. We don't have family around us so getting a babysitter this early that isn't someone I'm related to and therefore, in my eyes, has 'skin' in the game, doesn't float well with me. So Lil T factors in to plans. That meant, or so I thought, that we'd do some thing super easy for dinner party. Alas, the inner Heloise in D could not help bust through and our normal Roasted Nuts, Amuse Boucher, Appetisers, Starter, Main and Dessert ending up happening anyway.

These Crostini were our Appetisers. They are easy to make but they do require active participation for the duration of preparation. What does that mean? Well, I did a soup. So participation was front-end loaded, chop and walk. That's my idea of a baby friendly dish. Professionally, I'm in senior management and therefore an uber planner. When planning on baking or cooking, I pick days before, I plan out the chunks of activity between baby's needs; dry measure night before or loud processing when he's awake etc. Not D. He's like, power through, 'Lil dude should get use to the noise, plus you're here.' :-/ Six months into this concept and Lil Dude still screams bloody murder whenever D steams milk for his Macchiato. :-)

Shitake and Crimini Mushroom Goat Cheese Crostini

2 T Olive Oil
1 clove Garlic
1/2 Shallot, finely minced
1 T fresh Thyme
1 pint Shitake Mushrooms (one of those blue containers covered in plastic wrap in the market)
or half half 1-1.5 c Shitake and Crimini
2 T Sherry Vinegar
1/4 c Masala Wine
1/2 t Cornstarch
1 T Cream or Sour Cream
Salt to taste

Fresh Parsley or Fresh Thyme, garnish, optional

1/4 c fresh soft Goat Cheese

Brush and trim the Mushrooms.  Cook the Mushrooms in a pan on Medium/High heat with the Garlic, Thyme and Shallot.  Season slightly to taste but under salt.  The Cheese will add Saltiness.  Cook the Mushrooms until they are well browned.  Do not rush this.  5-10 minutes.  Then reduce heat to Medium.

Sautee Mushrooms in Pan
Whisk the Vinegar and Masala Wine with the Cornstarch.  Add to the Mushrooms.  Simmer until very thick.  Turn off the heat.  If your stove stays hot, remove the pan from the element.  Add the Cream. 

Toast some Baguette slices.  Spread with some Goat Cheese.  Place 1-2 T of the Mushrooms on each  and top with fresh Parsley or Thyme.  mmmm serve warm or room temperature.  Don't cook too far ahead or they congeal. D added the Cornstarch slurry just before serving.


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