Mushroom, Shallot & Thyme Tart

My family loves mushrooms, all kinds of mushrooms cooked in all sorts of ways.  And to be truthful, I love making things with mushrooms, as my family can tell you.  When we host our friends or family for brunch, I love to make mushroom and shallot tart with thyme.  It can also serve as an appetizer, but I prefer it as part of a brunch.

MUSHROOM, SHALLOT, AND THYME TART

8 Cremini Mushrooms
2 1/2 tablespoons organic Butter – unsalted
1/4 cup Spanish Sherry – medium
1 Shallot – sliced
1 cup Pecorino Romano – grated
1 teaspoon fresh Thyme
1/2 teaspoon Salt
1/2 teaspoon Pepper – freshly ground
1 sheet Puff Pastry

Allow the puff pastry to thaw at room temperature for about 40 to 45 minutes, or follow the directions on the box.

Begin by cleaning the mushrooms with a brush or a damp paper towel.  Slice the mushrooms as thick or thin as you like them; I prefer a thicker slice in this particular case, as the mushrooms need to stand out.  In a sauté pan, melt 1 1/2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat, and sauté the mushrooms until they caramelize.  Pour in the medium Spanish Sherry, and let cook out.  After that you may salt and pepper them.  Immediately, remove the mushrooms from the heat and place in a bowl.  Allow them to cool down.

*It is very important to NOT salt the mushrooms, until they caramelize.  If you salt them before, they will yield much water and end up steaming, instead of caramelizing.*  

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.  In the same pan, melt the rest of the butter on medium heat, then add the sliced shallots.  Allow them to caramelize, then remove them from the heat to cool.  Since I am using Pecorino Romano, which is a salty sheep’s milk cheese, I will not salt the shallots.

Lightly flour your board and open up the folded and thawed pastry.  Use a rolling pin to roll it out a little more. Using a fork, you may want to prick the dough to keep it from bubbling up.  Start by placing the grated Pecorino Romano evenly on the pastry, followed by the caramelized shallots, sherry mushrooms, and topped with fresh thyme.  Place on a baking sheet with a little non-stick spray and in the oven for 15 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to rest for a few minutes before cutting it up into squares.

Cut the mushroom tart into 9 squares and place on a serving plate.  Again, you may use it as part of a brunch spread or an appetizer before your main meal.  I hope you like it as much as my family and I do.  Enjoy!


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