Oh, the holidays! Such a lovely time of year, isn’t it? I say that not simply because of Christmas, but because of all the gatherings and festive parties that are about to take place. John and I are hoping (fingers crossed) to have a small gathering at out place, and just the thought of prepping the house, and making it all cozy comfy for our guests makes me SO excited. One of my favorite parts about hosting are those few hours right before people arrive. This is the time where I usually crank up the tunes, pour myself a little red wine, and put all the finishing touches on the snacks and appetizers.
Since the holidays are here, odds are you might be hosting a little party of your own. Now, some of the big questions I always ask are “what am I going to serve?” and “what will we sip on?” Well, the lovely people at Dark Horse Wine recently challenged to me to reinvent a classic holiday meal in an exciting and unexpected way and to pair it with a bottle of their lovely pinot noir. Now that I know what were are going to drink, I just needed to decided on some snacks. I’m already a lover of red wine, so I wanted to create an appetizer that would pair nicely with this specific, fruit-forward pinot noir.
Truth be told, I’m a sucker for a classic green bean casserole, so I thought it would be fun to turn this classic side dish into an appetizer. I know that traditional casseroles use mushroom cream sauce, which oddly enough doesn’t have a lot of mushroom pieces in it. I wanted to flip that, so I packed this crostini with a lot of mushroom with a few peas, and a lovey layer of cream. The earthy flavor of the mushrooms pair very well with this particular pinot noir. And as far as appetizers go, this is a really simple yet satisfying snack to put out for your guests.
Thank you to Dark Horse Wine for providing me with your lovely wine which inspired this recipe. Be sure to follow Dark Horse Wine on Instagram or Twitter. All opinions, words, and images are my own.
CREAMED MUSHROOM CROSTINIS
2 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter
1 Small Shallot, diced
10 Ounces Sliced Crimini Mushrooms
1/3 Cup Peas
1 Clove Garlic, minced
2 Sprigs of Thyme, leaves removed
1/4 Cup Heavy Cream
Salt and Pepper, to taste
12 Baguette Slices, 1/2 inch thick
Softened Butter, or Olive Oil
Fried onions, for garnish
Equipment: Large skillet, pastry brush, wood spoon or spatula
Melt butter in a large skillet set to medium-hight heat. Add diced shallots and cook until slightly softened, about 1-2 minutes. Add in the sliced mushroom and cook, without stirring, for 2-3 minutes, or until lightly browned. Add peas, and keep cooking the mushrooms, stirring occasionally, for another 5 minutes or until browned and tender. Add in garlic and thyme and cook for 1 minute. Pour in cream and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes, until the cream has thickened a bit. Season mushrooms with salt and pepper to taste.
Brush baguette slices with softened butter or oil and place on a skillet set to medium heat. Cook each side until golden brown. Remove from heat and top each slice with a spoonful of the sautéed mushrooms. Top each crostini with fried onions and serve immediately