Mushroom Caps 3.19 Keg! Max!
“What's going on there?” “Oh, we're having a party.” “A party?” “A party?” “Sort of a last-minute thing. Couldn't get too big a crowd here. I think we wound up with 55 or 60, something like that.” “60 people.” “Oh, here come the mushroom caps everybody!” “There's singing and mushroom caps.” “I am appalled by this.”
1 lb baby bella mushrooms, cleaned
1 tsp olive oil
5 oz fresh spinach
8 oz cream cheese, softened
⅓ cup sour cream
½ cup parmesan cheese, grated
½ tsp salt
½ tsp pepper
¼ tsp red pepper chili flakes
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
For the breadcrumb topping
3 slices sourdough bread
1 tbsp butter
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 strips of bacon, cooked and diced
1 tsp dried parsley
⅓ cup parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Remove the stems of the mushrooms and scoop out a little of the center to create a well. Set aside.
In a large skillet, hit the olive oil over medium heat. Add the spinach and cook for a few minutes until wilted.
Add the cream cheese and sour cream, stirring slightly. Allow to cook for 4-5 minutes or until the cream cheese has melted.
Stir in the parmesan cheese, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes until well combined.
Top with fresh lemon juice and remove from heat.
Place the slices of bread into a food processor and pulse until fine breadcrumbs are formed.
In another large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the garlic and sauté for about a minute or until the garlic because fragrant.
Add the breadcrumbs and toss to ensure the breadcrumbs are coated in the butter.
Cook for about 5-7 minutes or until the breadcrumbs start to toast. Stir occasionally to avoid burning.
Add the bacon, parsley, and cheese and toss to fully combine.
Place the mushrooms well side up in a large baking dish that has been prepared with cooking spray.
Scoop the spinach mixture into the wells of the mushrooms, careful not to overflow.
Sprinkle the breadcrumb mixture on top of the spinach mixture.
Bake at 375 for 20 minutes or until the crumb mixture has become golden brown and the mushrooms are soft.
I like to be honest with y’all about whenever I have kitchen fails because I am just an average home cook, and I make mistakes in the kitchen all the time. Originally, I was going to make this a spinach and artichoke filling—a classic combo! I decided I was going to use a fresh artichoke even though I have never cooked with one before. There is a reason that most people use jarred or canned artichoke hearts. Cutting into an artichoke is really difficult. I tried to follow a video tutorial to no avail. I had already started making my mushrooms, so I had to nix the artichoke from the filling. And honestly, it wasn’t really missed. The spinach gives enough flavor to the filling.
When I made Sookie’s mushroom soup for season two, I talked about how much I love mushrooms, but that I recognize how much of a debated ingredient they seem to be in the food world. While the soup was definitely strong in mushroom flavors, I think these mushroom caps could be a good try for someone who is wanting to ease into liking mushrooms. The creamy and cheesy filling and the bacon breadcrumb topping can mask the more potent flavors of the mushroom, though I know for some people, it still won’t be enough.
Speaking of debate, there is often a lot of debate in the Gilmore Girls fandom regarding Jess in this episode. I don’t think there is anything up for debate, though. What Jess did to Rory is manipulative, and it’s assault. Yes, he stopped, but he still tried to force Rory to sleep with him, and he got mad at her when she didn’t. Most of the time with Jess, I can understand the defense that he’s had a bad childhood and that’s why he does bad things. However, that defense doesn’t work here and it never will. It’s not up for debate. Period.
This episode is the very last we see of Max Medina. I really don’t see the point of his character coming back. I don’t think we really get any more closure between him and Lorelai than we did in 2.05 Sid and Nora, Nick and Nancy. It also doesn’t make sense to me that he is back at Chilton. The school year is almost done, and unless the previous English teacher just up and left, I don’t understand why Max is suddenly teaching at the school again. It would make a little more sense for it to happen at the start of the spring semester, but it doesn’t really work with just a few weeks left in the school year. Maybe Max offed the previous teacher so he could take their spot? Thoughts?
I love Hep Alien’s debut in this episode (even though they aren’t called Hep Alien yet). And I adore drunk Lane and her phone call to her mom. I wish we got to see Mrs. Kim’s side of the phone call. I think Emily Kuroda would have played that so well. In the next episode, I’m actually pretty surprised with how tame Mrs. Kim acts over the phone call, but we’ll get to that!
Happy Cooking from the Hollow!
If you missed what I made last episode, catch up here!