Sunday, September 27, 2009
Food blogs, and many others have have said every word they could on Junior League cookbooks, church cookbooks, and what have you. But what about golf tournament cookbooks: Shall I issue a treatise in defense?
Alright, I will skip it, this time.
I am aware of the vastly untrustworthy information contained in all of these volumes because, for the most part, they lack a test program of any sort. However, in concept at least, many of these books' ideas have merit. Many of them have dusty pizazz or some fabulous pedigree. I have contributed to them and I buy them, new and at book sales, and I use them for inspiration. No apologies: If you knew how tough in the tooth the left over turkey was that I needed to make use of, you would thank me for this resourcefulness. But since you've no way of being certain, you will just have to believe that this questionable golf tourney recipe helped me dispose of it and a huge drawer full of mushrooms, in an agreeable fashion.
And agreeable is definitely part of what we know of food in the home kitchen, is it not? In large part, we are not trained chefs, we are purposeful jacks of this trade and several others and I do think room should be made in an honest food blog for dishes which service economy, ease, and use of leftovers. I will not tell you it was the drop dead best thing I have made in this lifetime, I am only going to say that is was rich and satisfying and not the everyday use of remaining roast turkey here at Rancho Relaxo. So, welcome this dish, will you? It is serviceable, useful, and lovely. Not unlike the Hostess, come to think of it.
This may not light the culinary world on fire. But that is not my purview. I am here to get you through life pleasingly with a little grace and no wastefulness while transcending pre-packaged foods. In that vein, Mushrooms Newburg avec poulet, or any other worldly nonsense moniker of your choice.
Mushrooms Newburg Casserole
adapted from Tee Time at the Masters, Junior League of Augusta, Georgia
Once again, more of a concept here than truly a recipe. Use leftover chicken, turkey, or pork, all will be very nice and here you have general measurements for roughly 3/4 pound remaining meal, though more or less will be fine, as I've no idea at all what is in your fridge as I am not clairvoyant (though, you really should check the expiration on the salad dressing, eeeeew). Now then.
3 tablespoons butter
1 medium onion, diced
1 shallot, diced (optional)
Kosher salt and freshly cracked pepper
Mushrooms (fresh), 8 ounces or more would be best, cleaned and sliced
1 or 2 tablespoons cognac
3 tablespoons dry sherry
1 cup chicken stock
1/4 cup heavy or light cream
3/4 pound cooked chicken, pork, or turkey, shredded into bite-sized pieces
Thyme, marjoram, or any green herb you favor
Rice or toast points to serve.
In a large skillet over medium heat, saute the onion and shallot until softened and translucent, add the mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally to prevent browning, only until the liquid is nearly, but not entirely, gone from the pan.
Hold the pan off the heat while you add the cognac and sherry. Place the skillet back on the burner and add the chicken stock. Cook another few minutes until the mixture thickens slightly. Now add the meat and stir to combine. Add the cream, thyme, and marjoram (or any green herb you like) and stir again. Serve over rice or toast points, think of me.