Stuffed Mushrooms
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The secret to the best stuffed mushrooms is to saute the caps before filling them - creating a rich concentrated flavor as well as a great look when the caps are beautiful browned. Then it takes just a few minutes to heat them after they are filled. Perfection! When making stuffed mushrooms, splurge on a tray of the larger 'stuffing' caps so your pieces are all the same size. It ruins the look of the dish when there are large differences between mushroom sizes on a platter. If you do not have a good Italian market nearby that carries a very meaty Italian sausage, use the supermarket Jimmy Dean brand as it is very lean and has a nice fennel flavor.
Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 12 large 'stuffing' mushroom caps, stems removed, chopped, and reserved
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 6 ounces Jimmy Dean Italian sausage - about ⅔ of a package
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped - or two shallots
  • ¼ cup chopped red pepper
  • ¼ cup chopped flat leaf parsley
  • ¼ cup Progresso Italian flavored panko bread crumbs
  • ¼ cup grated Parmesan or Romano cheese
Instructions
  1. In a large nonstick skillet heat 1 tablespoon olive oil.
  2. Saute mushroom caps smooth side down, over medium high heat, 3 to 4 minutes, until tops are lightly browned and liquid starts to accumulate in cap.
  3. Carefully turn and brown edges of cup side, 1 to 2 minutes - liquids will evaporate. Place cooked mushrooms cup side down on paper towels to drain.
  4. Brown sausage in same skillet, mashing with a fork while cooking so that the mixture has a fine texture. Pour off any accumulated fat.
  5. Add chopped mushroom stems, garlic, onion, and red pepper; continue cooking over medium high heat until vegetables are softened and juices have evaporated, about 10 minutes.
  6. Remove from heat, and when mixture has cooled enough to handle, toss with parsley, bread crumb and cheese until well combined; season with salt and pepper.
  7. Arrange caps cup side up in a large baking dish and lightly season with salt and pepper. Pack with sausage mixture. Dish may be prepared in advance, covered and chilled until ready to bake.
  8. When ready to serve, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Cover dish with foil and bake 10 to 12 minutes, to heat mushrooms through.
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