If you were to ask me to pick out one type of produce to eat for the rest of my life, I would without a doubt or single hesitation answer mushrooms. While I did not really acquire a true taste for them up until about five years ago, these days I love each and every bite. Mushrooms are extremely versatile, lending their buttery flavor to everything from omelets and quiches to soups and pastas, and play so nicely with many different ingredients.
I made these for Thanksgiving as a little pre-meal snack; the flavors of fresh thyme and pinot noir really team up with the sassy crème fraîche to put a spin on the traditional finger food. Since I use shallots and garlic pretty frequently in my cooking, I dice them ahead of time in a larger batch and keep the reserve in a (well-sealed!) container in the refrigerator with a touch of light olive oil. This way I can spoon out any amount as needed without the hassle of last-minute chopping. The mushroom mixture can be made ahead of time and refrigerated, and the phyllo shells can be kept frozen until needed.
Mini Mushroom Cups
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1 1/2 lb fresh white mushrooms, cleaned and finely chopped
2 shallots, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
3 tbsp pinot noir (or other dry red wine)
1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
3/4 c crème fraîche
2 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 packages frozen mini phyllo shells (2.1 oz each; 30 total)
Preheat oven to 400°F.
In a large skillet, heat oil and butter over medium-high heat. Stir in shallots and garlic, sautéeing until slightly transparent. Add mushrooms, toss to coat and, stirring often, cook until edges begin to brown.
Add wine and stir, allowing all liquid to be absorbed. Stir in vinegar, crème fraîche, thyme, salt and pepper. Stirring every so often, allow mixture to simmer until it takes on a thicker consistency.
Spoon hot mushroom mixture into shells and place on a cookie sheet. Bake at 400°F for 8 to 10 minutes.