Stuffed and smoked mushroom caps

About a month ago, I splurged and picked up a Big Green Egg.  For those who may not know, the Big Green Egg will usher you into a new world of charcoal barbecuing and smoking all sort of food items.  I was away for a few torturous days when it first arrived but quickly sparked it up for a few New York strip steaks as soon as I could!

Once I understood the business end of this new charcoal Kamado grill and BBQ, I decided to delve into the world of smoked meats and foods.  My experimentation was in high gear last weekend as I prepared to host a wine tasting night for my wine-buying club.  I figured I would smoke some proscuitto-wrapped shrimp and try my hand at cold-smoking cheese.  What should have been a 4-5 hour smoking session for the cheese ended up lasting about 8 hours as the wood pellets kept going out.  There is definitely a fine balance to cold-smoking – particularly something like cheese – too much heat doesn’t work well for your product.  Luckily, I managed to eke out the cheese smoking the day before the party.  I slipped the block of Swiss and two types of Cheddar back into their original sleeves, wrapped them individually in cling film and popped them into air-tight containers before placing them in the fridge.  These layers helped keep the smoky flavour and smell contained – and away from all other food!

On Saturday, I whipped up the mushroom cap filling (based loosely on something I found online), filled them and topped with a Panko/Parmesan mixture.  I wrapped the shrimp and loaded them all onto wire cooling racks.  These would be very useful to move the caps and shrimp on and off the grill in a cinch.  A few hours before everyone arrived, I sparked up the Big Green Egg and smoked the shrimp and caps for about 75 minutes at 225*F.  The shrimp would be just as good at room temperature and I would pop the caps under the broiler for a few minutes before serving to warm and crisp them up again.  The proscuitto shrunk slightly when crisped up an created a straight-jacket style wrap for the shrimp.  I ended up not adding any salt to either appetizer as saltiness of the Parmesan and proscuitto would suffice.

All in all – I was very happy with the smoked cheese, shrimp and mushroom caps.  Now to carry on with Atomic Buffalo Turds! (If that doesn’t pique your interest I don’t know what will!)

Smoked and Stuffed Mushroom Caps

  • Servings: 24 caps
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Source: Food and Drink magazine
  • Print

  • 24 large brown mushrooms
  • 1/4 cup fresh spinach leaves, chopped finely
  • 8 ounces herb and garlic cream cheese
  • fresh ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup Panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup shredded Parmesan cheese

Directions

  1. Preheat smoker and add hickory wood chips.
  2. Using a paring knife, remove stems from mushroom caps.
  3. In a small bowl, mix cream cheese with chopped spinach.  Mound mixture into mushroom caps.  Top with a bit of fresh ground pepper.
  4. Mix Panko and Parmesan together in a small bowl.  Top each mushroom with a generous amount of bread crumbs/Parmesan mixture.
  5. Smoke at 225*F for 75 minutes.

Proscuitto-wrapped Shrimp

  • Servings: 30 skewers
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Source: Food and Drink magazine
  • Print

  • 30 small bamboo skewers, soaked at least 1 hour in water
  • 1 lb. large shrimp (26-30 size – indicates the number of shrimp per pound)
  • 2 pkgs supermarket brand thinly-sliced proscuitto
  • Drizzle Olive Oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
  • Zest of 1/2 lemon
  1. Thaw and peel shrimp except for the tail segment.  Dry the shrimp then drizzle with enough olive oil to adhere the paprika.
  2. Sprinkle on the smoked paprika and toss gently for even distribution.
  3. Uncurl a shrimp in your hand and gently skewer it resulting in a sausage link shaped shrimp.
  4. Wrap each shrimp with a half slice of proscuitto starting at the tail.  Make sure to wrap snugly.
  5. Place on smoker at 225F for 75 minutes.
  6. Plate skewers on serving platter and zest the lemon over top.  Can be served at room temperature as well.

3 thoughts on “Stuffed and smoked mushroom caps

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