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Mushroom Puree

A spectacularly tasty accompaniment to almost any meat dish, Mushroom Puree is well worth the time and effort required to make it. It may also be served as a snack, on toast or zoith crusty French bread.

22 oz. butter

2 lb. mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced

3 fl. oz. water

2 teaspoons salt

2 tablespoons lemon juice

1 teaspoon grated nutmeg

2 teaspoon black pepper

2 tablespoons flour

3 fl. oz. milk

1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

4 to

6 Croutons

In a medium-sized frying-pan, melt

15 ounces of the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the mushrooms and mix well. Pour in the water and add

1 teaspoon of the salt, the lemon juice, nutmeg and black pepper. Bring the mixture to the boil, stirring frequently.

Simmer, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes.

Remove the pan from the heat and strain the mushrooms and cooking liquid into a large mixing bowl. Reserve the cooking liquid and set aside.

Puree the mushrooms in a blender or food mill, or, alternatively, mash them with a fork. Set aside.

Add the remaining butter to the frying-pan and melt it over moderate heat. Remove the pan from the heat and, with a wooden spoon, stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Gradually add the reserved cooking liquid and the milk, stirring constantly. Return the pan to the heat. Simmer the mixture, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes or until it is thick and smooth.

Stir the pureed mushrooms into the sauce and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add the remaining salt if required.

Remove the pan from the heat and transfer the puree to a warmed serving dish. Sprinkle over the parsley ‘and arrange the croutons decoratively around the puree. Serve at once.

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