Today, I’m bringing a delicious side dish to your Christmas or New Year’s Eve dinner. A warm and creamy winter mushroom gratin flavored with lemon, rosemary, thyme and Parmesan cheese. We love mushrooms but my usual method of cooking them is a simple saute. This recipe definitely raises the bar!
The recipe is based on one I found in a cookbook that I recently won from fellow blogger, Pam, of Pam’s Midwest Kitchen Korner. She had offered the book as a giveaway to celebrate her blog’s 6th anniversary and I was the lucky winner! Thank you again, Pam!
The cookbook is called West Town Tavern: Contemporary Country Food with recipes from the popular former Chicago restaurant of the same name.
Unfortunately for us Midwesterners, the owners, Susan Goss and Drew Goss have relocated to New Orleans and the restaurant has closed. At least we have their cookbook which is filled with wonderful recipes! It was so hard deciding which recipe to make first but I’m so glad I started with this mushroom gratin because it was so packed with wonderful flavors that I can see myself making it over and over again this winter.
It would be delicious as a side to almost any type of meat, or, just add a simple salad and it could be a delightful meatless meal for two. We enjoyed it with Garlic Buttered King Crab Legs. Oh, and did I mention you can make this a day ahead? Time saver alert!
I hope you are enjoying the many lights and decorations of the season!
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 large shallots, thinly sliced
1 large clove garlic, minced
1-1/2 lbs. assorted winter mushrooms (I used half cremini and half shiitake), trimmed and sliced
1/4 cup dry Sherry
1-1/2 cups heavy cream
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
1/2 cup grated good quality Parmesan cheese
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
2 tablespoons minced fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon minced fresh rosemary leaves
2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
Can be made a day in advance.
the mushrooms and slice or chop thickly, discarding stems of woody
mushrooms as shiitake. You can leave little mushrooms whole.
5-quart saute pan, heat the olive oil until almost smoking over medium
heat. Add the shallots and saute until golden, about 2 minutes. Add
the garlic and mushrooms, cover the pan and let the mushrooms simmer
until they have given up their juices, about 10 minutes. Uncover the
pan and raise the heat to high. Continue to saute the mushrooms,
stirring, until the pan is dry and then add the Sherry. Stir until the
mushrooms absorb the Sherry, then add the cream and salt and pepper to
taste. Bring the cream to a boil and reduce the heat to medium-low and
simmer until the cream has thickened, about 3 or 4 minutes. Stir in the
grated cheese, lemon zest and herbs and remove from heat. Adjust
seasonings, if necessary.
Divide the mushrooms and sauce
mixture among 6 small ramekins or use gratin dishes. At this point they
can be covered and refrigerated overnight.
If serving right
away, preheat the broiler to high. Place the ramekins or gratins on a
baking sheet and broil until bubbling and golden on top, about 30
seconds, watching carefully. Serve immediately.
If the mushroom
mixture has been made ahead and is cold, preheat the oven to 350F,
uncover ramekins and bake until the gratins are warmed and bubbling.
Then turn on the broiler and broil them until golden brown on the top as
Adapted from West Town Tavern: Contemporary Comfort Food
Note: The original recipe calls for orange zest and pecorino romano cheese.