The mighty mushroom has many different applications in cooking. Primarily it is used in sauces, mostly as a flavoring agent. Mushrooms are found through out the world. I attended an introductory micology class once and they told us that if spoors were green we would not be able to see each other due to the fact that they were so prevalent in our atmosphere.
Here is a fun little appetizer that has many variations. Mushrooms can be stuffed with a variety of fillings. Boursin cheese, spinach, crab meat or any seafood mixture that you care to invent.
When you use cheeses like cream cheese, the heat will melt them and make them run, so add some bread crumb to stiffen the mixture. Mushrooms are mostly water and they tend to dry out and loose their moisture when exposed to heat, to insure that they remain moist put a little white wine in the pan. Cook them in a fairly hot oven for about 15 minutes. The topping should brown just slightly.
Here is a basic recipe for the Boursin stuffing:
25 Mushrooms (Stems taken out)
1 Pkg Boursin cheese
1 Pound Cream Cheese
1 Tbsp Minced Fresh Garlic
2 Tbsp Fresh Minced Herbs (Basil, Thyme, Rosemary)
1 Tbsp Minced Shallots
Salt and Pepper to taste
1 Cup Fine Bread Crumbs
Wash your mushrooms, carefully break the stems off inside the cap. Often the mushrooms that you get from the super-market are cut off at the bottom of the cap. I use my cheap set of measuring spoons , to hollow out the stem portion, the 1/2 teaspoon size is perfect for this. (a small melon ball scoop will work as well) Let the cream cheese come up to room temperature or put it in the micro-wave for 10-15 seconds. Now put all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and blend them together. Add half of the bread crumbs and check the mixture for stiffness. Add the rest if you think you need them.
When they cook you want it to stand up, but not to taste like bread so add just enough to make it stiff. Next put your filling into a pastry bag with a star tip and pipe the filling into the cap. Bake according to the directions above.
For the Spinach and Fontina filling we simply added chopped cooked spinach and shredded Fontina to the Boursin mixture. Go easy on the spinach, if you add too much it will turn very brown when cooked and taste like straw.