Stuffed Mushrooms with Caramelized Onions, Bacon and Gouda
The plan seemed doable.
I wanted a photo of the stuffed mushrooms resting on a serving tray mere minutes before they would be introduced to the hungry post-wedding crowd. Anyone who is or has been involved with catering or restaurants will know how incredibly funny that notion was. Over and over I bring a camera to events telling myself THIS time I will have the presence of mind to snap the shutter at that moment the delicacies are perfect, and two moments before they vanish or become not so perfect.
The time frame to enjoy this art form is extremely brief.
And of course, you guessed it…no pictures. At that point the priority is the food, the people, the timing, the flow…everything else is excess luggage dropped by the wayside. Once the service-wave of the meal begins you can do nothing but ride it with as much energy as you can muster from the depths and focus on what needs to happen to keep things rolling. And keep the sense of humor (the real Sixth Sense).
Ah well. I suppose mushrooms are not terribly photogenic anyway, all brownish gray and mushroomy. But they were tasty and disappeared quickly! Instead are some pictures I took the ‘day after’ of the wedding/reception location DeNovo Barn. The first image is the ceremony spot overlooking the river valley. The next two are of the dining space, and below is looking out the front door to the schoolhouse that was relocated and transformed into the Bride’s Cottage.
One lone mushroom I saved for a photo!
Five ingredients: mushrooms, caramelized onions, bacon, gouda and fresh thyme are all that are necessary and you don’t need any help from me to figure out that they are tasty together. The mushrooms provide depth of character and a great vehicle to get it into your mouth. The caramelized onions add more depth and a savory-caramel-sweetness to add dimension. The bacon….criminy do I really have to write about what bacon adds? Seriously. Just know that bacon makes everything better and I don’t have to be redundant. Gouda is creamy goodness that can blend but not overpower. Fresh thyme adds the floral aromatic element that finishes it off. And there you have it, a perfect mouthful that’s perfect for a party.
Scoop out the mushrooms to give a little more room for the bacon. A small melon scoop can work, or a small spoon. Then toss with olive oil, salt and pepper.
Some of the stuffed buddies together.
I assembled them days ahead then froze them on trays. Once frozen they can be transferred to freezer bags for easy storage, then baked frozen when you’re ready for a party.
Stuffed Mushrooms with Caramelized Onions, Bacon and Gouda Cheese
Prep Time: 2 hours for the onion, 15 minutes for bacon, 10 to mix together
Bake Time: around 20 minutes
Dice and saute slowly in a pan for around 1 hour, stirring occasionally:
1 Tablespoon Butter
1 large onion
Remove stem and lightly scoop out:
1 pound Button Mushrooms
Mix together in a bowl:
4 strips Bacon, cooked and finely diced
1/4 – 1/3 cup Gouda Cheese, grated
1/4 cup Caramelized Onions (save the rest of the caramelized onion for other dishes)
Fresh Thyme, chopped
Black Pepper (optional)
Stuff the mushrooms with filling, pressing lightly to compact but not so much that you break the mushroom.
At this point you can bake and use, refrigerate overnight and bake, or freeze the unbaked mushrooms for later use.
To Bake—Heat oven to 375 degrees and bake on a sheet tray for around 30 minutes or until cheese has melted.
To Freeze—Arrange stuffed mushrooms on a tray and freeze, then transfer to a plastic bag for frozen storage. When ready to use spread frozen mushrooms on a baking sheet and bake 3–4o minutes in a 375 degree oven.