If you don’t know, duxelles is just French for “mushrooms cooked down into paste”. Mushroom paste?
Blech. No wonder they made up a fancy-sounding word for it.
But it is yummy if you’re into mushrooms. If you’re not, I completely understand because I have hated mushrooms my whole life until very recently when I had them Spanish-style braised in sherry and garlic. I was transfixed and never again will I turn my nose up at a mushroom… unless it’s too mushroomy.
You can use duxelles as a stuffing inside butterflied chicken breasts or pork chops. It’s required when making Beef Wellington. It would also be lovely in an omelet. And as a matter of fact, it goes great with cream cheese in puff pastry, which should be obvious because really what doesn’t go great with cream cheese in puff pastry?
Short answer: nothing.
BUT. WAIT. STOP. THE. PRESSES.
Before we go any further, I need you to imagine that you hold in your hand a jar of that sweet and spicy Nectar of the Gods known as jalapeno jelly. Now imagine it used as a dip for these crisp, savory puff pastry nibblies.
Great. Now we can all relax.
- 8 ounces mushrooms, minced
- 1 large shallot, minced
- 2 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- salt and pepper
- 2 tablespoons sherry or dry white wine
- 3 ounces cream cheese
- 1 pound puff pastry
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
- Melt the butter over high heat and add the mushrooms, shallots, and thyme.
- Cook for about 5 minutes or until most of the liquid has evaporated.
- Add the sherry and cook another few minutes.
- Remove from heat and let cool.
- Sprinkle a smooth work surface with flour and roll one sheet of puff pastry out into a rectangle, about 9″x12″.
- Cut into 12 squares.
- Put 1 tablespoon of the duxelles and 1 teaspoon of cream cheese in the center of each square.
- Moisten the edges with water and pull up the corners of the pastry to make a little packet.
- Put them on the parchment-lined sheet and bake 20-25 minutes.
- Repeat with the other sheet of pastry and the remaining filling.
- Cool 10 minutes before serving.
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