Thursday, January 26, 2012

Mushrooms in Cream with BEER!

Thank you to everyone who messaged me on Facebook or Twitter giving me feed back about the blog! Your comments really do keep me going.

Last night after packing up the left over soup in a tupperware I decided that I was still hungry, and potato and leeks just were not hitting the spot (however, it was a fantastic lucnh today) I had the creative juices flowing and decided to try my hand at another first, Mushrooms in Cream.

I guess mushrooms in cream is really more of a sauce then a actual dish, but the possibility's are endless. You can pair it with chicken breast, pork loin (as I did), pour it over rice, pasta or risotto, hell, I would even try it over spaghetti squash! (Ooooo! That's going in the list!)

I have to admit, I'm not overly adventurous in the mushroom department. I opted to go with your everyday, run of the mill white mushroom, but I strongly encourage you to branch out and try a wide variety. Baby portabello's or chanterells would be great with this recipe.

Start with 2 tablespoons of oil and 2 of butter in a medium pan over medium heat. When the butter has melted, toss in your sliced mushrooms. In the words of Julie Powell " Don't crowd the mushrooms or they won't brown"

The light in my kitchen makes baby kittens cry

The browning process takes about 12 - 15 min. They should be tender and filling your kitchen with a wonderful aroma. Now add 4 cloves of minced garlic, 1/3 teaspoon of salt, a pinch of black pepper and 1 tablespoon of fresh thyme, stems removed and finely chopped. Saute that for about 2-3 min.

Now, if you have decided to make a meat with this, I strongly recommend you cook it in the mushroom mixture from the very beginning, because now we are going to deglaze the pan.

Our good friend Wikipeda says ;
Deglazing is a cooking technique for removing and dissolving caramelized bits of food from a pan to make a pan sauce
It sounds super scary, but I promise its not. Really all it is is adding liquid to get all the last bits of flavor off of the pan. You can use anything you like, wine, brandy, broth, water, but in this case, I used beer! Fremont Brewery's Abominable winter ale to be exact.

A great tip my mother gave me a few years ago after a terrible experience with a wine and cheese sauce is "Don't cook with booze you wouldn't drink." Balance that out with not drinking it all before it makes it into the pot and you're set.

Back to our mushrooms, taking them off the heat and removing any meats you may have been cooking in them, add 1/4 cup of whatever liquid you have decided to use. Place the pan back on high heat to evaporate off the liquid, should be about 2 min. Continuously stir and be sure to scrape the bottom of the pan, we want all that deliciousness in the sauce. Once the liquid has mostly cooked off, add 2/3 cup of heavy cream and reduce heat to simmer for 2 min. Remove from heat and pour over what ever you have decided to serve it with.

Why yes, I am using inside my cupboard as a back drop
 The mushrooms and herbs ad a lot of flavor, but what ever you choose to deglaze with will really define your sauce. So choose carefully depending on what you are pairing it with.

2 Tb oil
2 Tb butter
1 lb mushrooms
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 Tb fresh thyme
1/3 tea salt
Pinch black pepper
1/4 cup deglazing liquid of your choice
2/3 cup heavy cream

This recipe was influenced greatly by a entry from blog called An Edible Mosaic which features beautiful food porn. Her photography is truly amazing.

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