Though not quite as old school as pigs in a blanket or swedish meatballs, stuffed mushrooms definitely fit into the category of "classic" cocktail appetizers. What makes a classic? I say a classic appetizer must be a perenial crowd-pleaser and exhibit a simple elegance that doesn't feel dated. These tasty babies are all that and more.
Mike has become the maker of the stuffed mushrooms in our house. At some point, he was inspired by Paula Deen ('nuff said), but since then, he has made this appetizer his own. As a true classic, they lend themselves well to new interpretations and updates. Just like a perfect pair of jeans or little black dress, they can be an ideal canvas on which to express your personal style. These days, Mike is big into arugula. As for the proscuitto, let's hope that never goes out of style.
You can stuff the mushrooms and refrigerate them for several hours before you want to serve. Just put them straight into the oven from the refrigerator and add a couple extra minutes to the baking time. Mike's other favorite interpretation of this appetizer is his crab leg version. Just substitute the prosciutto for crab meat, the arugula for spinach, and the creole seasoning for Old Bay. Delicious is always in style.
These humble little shroomies were surprisingly fun to photograph. Love the sleek, geometric look.
Stuffed Mushrooms with Arugula and Prosciutto
3 to 4 oz. cream cheese, softened
4 thin slices prosciutto, finely chopped
1 c. arugula leaves, thick stems removed, finely chopped
2 oz. freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Cooking spray (I use the olive oil variety)
24 button mushroom caps, cleaned with a damp paper towel, if necessary
Creole seasoning (substitute any spicy blend or use a combination of black pepper, cayenne pepper and chili powder)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a bowl, combine first four ingredients. Lightly coat a baking sheet with cooking spray. Arrange the mushrooms on the baking sheet and give them a quick coating of cooking spray, as well. Stuff each mushroom cap with some of the filling. Sprinkle creole seasoning over the tops of the stuffed mushrooms. Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until mushrooms are soft and cooked through.
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