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Monday, October 15, 2007

Mushroom Tarts

Last night I decided to make some fancy appetizers before dinner. There was no big special occasion, it was just sort of a, "oh my GOD, I have nothing to post tomorrow" sort of occasion. Although, I sold it to Mario as more of a, "I made you a special treat because your the best-est Husband in the whole world (I bought some new shoes)" sort of occasion.

I have always had an special bond with mushroom tarts. In fact way back when Mario and I were first dating, his Mom happened to make some, and I exclaimed, "Oh mushroom tarts, my FAVORITE"... well, they aren't truly my favorite, not in the Poutine sort of sense, but I do really like them a lot. Anyway, since then, Mario's Mom continues to make mushroom tarts for me all the time. So much so, that there is really no need for me to make them at home, and thus it's been years and years since I have pulled out this recipe and made it. The first thing I noticed was... they aren't as good as Mario's Mom's. I think that I like my pastry better, but her filling is the BOMB. So now I'm going to have to do some reconnaisance to figure out what she does differently.

In the meantime while I am busy with my spy work, if you are hankerin' for some mushroom tarts, these ones are a fine substitute!

Oh, and because I always like to write a sentence or two about the official reaction of "the offspring"... Claire and Marco were out in the yard raking (e.g. jumping in) leaves when I served these. I brought a couple out to the back door for them to eat outside. A few minutes later, Mario goes to look out the window... "looks like your tarts are really popular with the seagulls"...

Mushroom Tarts
makes 12 mini tarts

1 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, diced
1/2 cup cream cheese, diced

1 tbsp butter
8 oz fresh mushrooms, diced
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 tbsp lemon juice
1/4 cup chopped green onion
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
salt and pepper to taste

1. In a food processor, mix together all the ingredients for the pastry. Form into a ball, wrap and chill for 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, in a non-stick skillet, saute mushrooms and garlic in butter until soft and most of the liquid is evaporated. Add cream, lemon juice, green onion and parsley. Bring to a boil and remove from heat. Season to taste.

3. Remove pastry from fridge. It will be a little to soft for rolling, so break off 1" balls, flatten them with the palm of your hand, and press them into the tart tins.

4. Fill each pastry shell with mushroom mixture and bake at 400F for 20 minutes until golden brown.