Sweetcorn and Mushroom Croutes

A tasty mixture of hot, crisp croutes, filled with sweetcorn, mushrooms, tomatoes and garlic in a thick creamy sauce, Sweetcorn and Mushroom Croutes may be served as a light snack lunch, or as a first course.

1 oz. butter garlic clove, crushed small tomatoes, blanched, peeled and chopped

4 oz. canned sweetcorn, drained

2 oz. button mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced

1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

1 teaspoon dried oregano

½ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoon black pepper

1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh chives

1 tablespoon flour egg yolks

8 fl. oz. double cream

6 Croutes, fried, drained and kept hot

In a medium-sized frying-pan, melt the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the garlic and tomatoes.

Cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until the tomatoes are very soft.

Add the sweetcorn, mushrooms, cay-enne, oregano, salt, pepper and chives to the pan. Cook the mixture, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Sprinkle over the flour and stir it thoroughly into the mixture. Cook, stirring frequently, for -3 minutes or until the mixture has thick-ened. Remove the pan from the heat and keep the mixture hot.

In a small, heatproof mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks and cream together with a wire whisk or rotary beater.

Place the bowl in a medium-sized saucepan half-filled with hot water. Set the pan over moderately low heat and cook the mixture, beating constantly, until it is very thick. Do not allow the mixture to boil or the eggs will scramble.

Remove the pan from the heat. Lift the bowl out of the pan and stir the cream mixture into the vegetables in the frying- pan.

Place the hot croutes on a serving dish and fill them with the vegetable and cream mixture. Serve immediately.

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