Sunday, November 18, 2012

Caramelized Onion and Mushroom Pudding (with Bakon?!?!)

Last week Food52 linked to an article entitled "Mushrooms Turn Bacon: A Vegan's Delight" and I was fascinated.  Mushrooms that taste like bacon?...That can't be!  I did some research and found a video that used Shitake mushrooms in place of the hard to find Trumpets that the article referred to.  I made them and found them pretty satisfying and so added them to this bread pudding.

Serves 6 to 8

For the Bakon?!?! 

8 ounces Shitake mushrooms
3 Tbl extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp salt
Remove the stems from the mushrooms and discard or reserve for stock
Slice the caps in about 1/3 inch slices
Place the mushroom slices in a bowl, add the oil and salt and toss thoroughly.  Place on a baking sheet and roast in a 350F oven for 30 to 40 minutes, turning every 10 minutes.  Set aside to cool.

For the pudding:

6 cups cubed bread cut from a stale baguette (approximately 18" long)
1 large sweet onion, peeled, halved and then thinly sliced
5 Tbl butter, divided
8 ounces sliced mixed mushrooms (I used Baby Bella, Shitake and Oyster)
1 clove minced garlic
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
4 eggs
2 cups half and half
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
The previously made Bakon?!?! pieces torn up a little
2 cups shredded Fontina cheese (about 6 ounces) divided
A very well buttered 9x13 inch baking dish

In a large saute pan, melt 2 Tbl of the butter, add the sliced onions and cook over medium heat until lightly caramelized.  This will take about 15 minutes.  Place in a small bowl to cool.
In the same pan, melt the remaining 3 Tbl butter, add the sliced mushrooms, garlic and thyme and over high heat saute until the mushrooms brown up.
Whisk the eggs, half and half and black pepper together and add to the bread cubes. Stir in the onions, mushrooms, 1 cup of the fontina and the Bakon?!?!.
Pour the mixture into the well buttered baking dish, top with the remaining Fontina and cover and refrigerate for 4 to 6 hours.
Bake the pudding in a pre heated 350F oven for 40 to 45 minutes.  Let rest for about 10 minutes before cutting.

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