When you get lucky enough to find good fresh mushrooms at a reasonable price, you are duty-bound to purchase them and make something delicious.
At the Lotte Asian market in Ellicott City, MD, I found a beautiful pack of King Oyster mushrooms. King Oysters have a very small trumpet-like cap and a thick stem. Unlike white button mushrooms, the texture of the stem is as pleasant as the texture of the caps and after nipping off the little bit that was in the growing medium, King Oysters can be eaten and cooked, stem and all.
I happened to have a few shiitakes from the organic market and a pack of button mushrooms on hand when I decided to make something special for my hard-working Redhead. She loved this dish, which I served with the heirloom caprese from last week.
One thing I did learn - don't microwave cooked puff pastry. I tried it the next day, and while the outside looked fine, the inside layers were black and smoky. Yuck.
Three Mushroom Napoleon recipe is per serving
6-8 King Oyster mushrooms, trimmed, sliced lengthwise into 1/4" slices
12 or so shiitake mushroom caps only, quartered.
6-8 white button mushrooms, quartered.
2 tablespoons butter, plus one tablespoon melted for brushing pastry
1 tablespoon olive oil
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon dried tarragon
2 oz. brandy (doesn't have to be good stuff, I used Christian Brothers)
salt and pepper to taste
1/3 sheet frozen puff pastry
Defrost the puff pastry in the refrigerator until it is pliable. Remove the third of a sheet you need and continue to defrost it. Return the rest to the freezer or use for another purpose.
In a large skillet, melt the butter and heat the olive oil together over medium heat. Add the King Oyster mushrooms and sautee for about 1 minute. Add the rest of the mushrooms with a scant pinch of salt, and sautee for about three-five minutes or until all the mushrooms are softened.
Add the cream to the skillet and toss with the mushrooms. Once it has reduced significantly, add the brandy and tarragon, and reduce the heat to low to reduce further.
Cut the puff pastry into 3 equal square pieces. Brush with butter and bake until golden brown, puffy, and delicious, about 8-12 minutes.
Once the sauce is thick, place one piece of puff on a plate and top with 1/2 of the mushrooms and sauce. Place a second piece on top of that and top with the other half. Chef gets the last piece of puff for himself. Alternately, you can use thirds and add another layer to the Napoleon. Make sure you end with mushrooms and sauce on top.