Can a man stand tall and proud when he’s hunching over to pull out baked stuffed mushrooms for him and his boyfriend to enjoy on a Sunday night while waiting to watch the one-hour premiere of Kirstie Alley’s Big Life? (I’ll leave out references to the powder blue oven mitt I got for Christmas). Two days later, I still am unsure of my answer to that question and would like to pass until the next round, Wink. I will say, however that there was not one bit of stuffed shroom left anywhere in my home within twenty minutes of turning down the oven and presenting them to a most-surprised and delighted MG. One might argue that it’s nearly impossible for anything to taste bad when slathered in a mixture of heated cream cheese, bacon, parmesan and Worcestershire sauce, but I would like to think that my ever-mounting kitchen skills had something to do with these coming out as awesome as they did.
I’m still not the biggest fan of the shroom, but the zesty aroma will make them hard to refuse. A definite must-bring to any pot-luck party. Just make sure your host has available oven space to cook them just before putting them out. (Geez, I sound like Martha Stewart! I’m tossing that powder blue oven mitt the minute I get home!)
Stuffed Mushrooms from Half Hour Meals
1 package of large white mushrooms (about 10)
8 oz. cream cheese
6 strips of bacon (cooked and crumbled)
1 tbsp. worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp. parmesan cheese (separated)
Preheat your oven to 400F. Wipe all your mushrooms off with a damp paper towel to remove all dirt. DON’T RINSE THEM or they’ll absorb all the water and blow up to something you could attach to a rope and parade down Central Park West on Thanksgiving morning.
Carefully pull out each stump so there is a hole in each mushroom to stuff. Discard the stumps. If one breaks off, you can use a spoon to scrape it out of the inside of the hole.
In a large bowl, add your cream cheese and stick in the microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute to soften. Take your precooked, crumbled bacon and add to the cream cheese. Stir and add your Worcestershire sauce as well. Mix all ingredients vigorously until fully combined. Take a spoonful of the mixture and fill each mushroom cap. You can fill each cap pretty generously as long as it does not fall down the side of the mushroom.
Place your mushrooms, filling side up, in a greased baking pan. Place into the oven and cook for about 15-25 minutes, ovens will vary. The last 5 minutes pull the pan out of the oven and top with grated parmesan cheese. You can tell that they are done when the mushrooms are dark in color and slightly mushy to the touch. The filling should be slightly browned on top.
Remove from heat and allow to cool for a few minutes. The filling will be extremely hot! If you have any filling leftover, I recommend hanging on to is and using as as a bagel or sandwich spread. You will not be disappointed.