Guest Post: Breton Breakfast Galette with Cremini Mushrooms by Eat. Live. Travel. Write.

We’ve got a guest in our kitchen today… The very talented Mardi of Eat. Live. Travel. Write.
You may recognize Mardi from over at the Mushroom Channel, where she did some fabulous guest posts last year… but we have since stolen her away, and now she has two delicious guest posts in store for us!

Hi, I’m Mardi and I write the blog eat. live. travel. write. I’m so excited to be posting here at, mushrooms being one of my favourite vegetables, not just for their taste but their incredible versatility in many dishes. On my blog, I write about my culinary adventures, both near and far. I am an avid traveler and one of my favourite souvenirs to bring back from my trips is recipes. Recreating a dish we have enjoyed on vacation is the next best thing to being there! Of course, bringing back some food items from your travels is also a great way to extend your vacation too!

The inspiration behind the dish I am sharing today comes from a region of France that I absolutely adore. We spent a week in Brittany just over a year ago, around New Year, and one of our favourite tastes of the region was the ubiquitous galette au sarrasin. What’s a galette, I hear you ask? Well, it’s what most French crêperies call savoury buckwhat flour pancakes, (ones made from regular flour, and served with a sweet filling, are called crêpes. The galette is popular in Normandy and Brittany where buckwheat was introduced as a crop suited to poor soil. The Breton galette is cooked on one side only and filled with egg, meat, cheese, vegetables etc… The galette is folded over the filling to leave some of the filling still peeking out. One of the most popular varieties is a galette covered with grated Emmental cheese a slice of ham and an egg, cooked in the galette. In France, this is known as a “complète“.

We ate all sorts of varieties of galette during our stay – both savory and sweet and it’s been my goal to try to recreate some of these here at home. In Brittany, we ate galettes for both lunch and dinner but never for breakfast, even though it seems like the perfect dish – a perfect canvas for all sorts of creative filling combinations. Omelettes are great for breakfast (and I particularly love mushroom ones!) but sometimes you just don’t want eggs for breakfast. A galette filled with Emmenthal cheese, thinly sliced Black Forest ham and herb-sautéed mushrooms is a light, yet satisfying way to start your day and something a little different from the usual breakfast/ brunch fare.

For this recipe, I used cremini mushrooms. Part of the Agaricus bisporus family to which most common mushroom varieties belong, the cremini lies between the common button variety and the portobello mushroom in age, meaning that it’s not quite as brown or as large as the portobello but darker and larger than button mushrooms. The age difference also means that the cremini are slightly firmer than the button mushroom, making it perfect for a dish where it’s going to be lightly sautéed as it will hold its shape better than the younger white mushrooms. I also happen to really like the look of the cremini variety.

One of my favourite ways to eat mushrooms is simply sautéed in butter and served on toast. It was a standard meal for me when I was a poor student in Paris in my 20s! This recipe is a nod to that simple preparation, with a touch of herbes de Provence and mushroom stock to really pack a flavour punch and heighten the “mushroomy goodness” inside the galette.

Breton breakfast galette with cremini mushrooms

Serves 8
Prep time: 10 minutes
Resting time for the batter: 1 hour to overnight
Active cooking time: about 30 minutes

Ingredients for the galettes:
250 g buckwheat flour
1 tablespoon all purpose flour
250 mls milk
250 mls water
1 egg, separated
1/2 teaspoon salt
extra water to thin the batter

Mix the flours together, making a well in the centre. Add the egg yolk and mix until combined. Slowly add first the milk, then the water, incorporating with a whisk until you have a smooth batter (it will still be a little thick at this point but as long as it’s smooth, you’re good).
In a separate bowl, beat the egg white and salt until it forms stiff peaks and then fold into the batter with a rubber spatula.
Cover and refrigerate for an hour or overnight.

Ingredients for the filling for one galette (just make as much as you need):
4 large cremini mushrooms
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 teaspoon herbes de Provence **
1/4 cup mushroom stock (ideally mushroom or you could use whatever you have on hand)

Melt the butter over a medium heat in a heavy bottomed skillet. Add the herbs de Provence and sauté for a minute or so. Add the mushrooms and coat with the butter and herbs. Sauté over medium heat until softened – a couple of minutes. Turn up the heat slightly and add the stock. Simmer until the liquid has mostly evaporated, a couple more minutes. Drain on paper towels and set aside.

Other fillings:
1 thin slice of Black Forest ham
1/4 cup shredded Emmenthal cheese
sprinkle of chopped chives for garnish

1. When you take your batter out of the fridge, you might need to add some more water or milk. The batter should be fairly thin – think smoothie consistency.
2. You will probably have a couple of galettes that don’t work out the first time. Usually I find it takes a couple to get into the technique!

Heat a large non-stick frying pan over medium heat. You might like to melt some butter (about 1 tablespoon) to start with and after every 2-3 galettes, depending on how “non stick” your pan is. One of my pans does not require any butter, some of my older ones do.
Using a half-cup measure, pour batter into the centre of the pan and immediately swirl the pan to spread the mixture – you’re looking for a galette that’s about 8-9 inches across so it will be very thin.
As the edges begin to crisp up a little, make sure the galette is not sticking, especially in the centre. I use a large, thin plastic spatula to keep this in check.
You’ll know the galette is ready to flip when it’s completely dry looking on top. It might bubble and look a little “lacy” but that’s fine – in fact that’s perfect!
Flip the galette carefully and immediately add the cheese in the centre. Once the edges of the cheese have started to melt, add the mushrooms, saving a couple for garnish. Press them into the cheese. Cook a minute or so then add the ham.
Fold in the sides of the galette to slightly cover the fillings. Traditionally the galette is served in a square shape with all four sides folded in but I kind of like with just two sides folded over (oh, and it’s pretty hard to make it stay folded when it’s all four corners!).
Top the completed galette with the mushrooms you set aside and a sprinkle of chives.
Bon appétit!

**If you can’t find herbes de Provence, you can easily make your own mix to store in an airtight container for future use using the following formula:

5 tablespoons dried thyme
3 tablespoons dried savory
2 tablespoon dried marjoram
5 tablespoons dried rosemary
1 tablespoon dried basil

Thanks so much Mardi for being our guest.

Don’t forget to follow Mardi on her blog Eat. Live. Travel. Write., and on Twitter.

Mardi will be back here again later in the year for another guest post and a delicious mushroom recipe, so stay tuned!

Guest Post: Mushroom Ravioli by Guilty Kitchen

We’ve got a guest in our kitchen today… The very talented Elizabeth of Guilty Kitchen.

You may recognize Elizabeth from the Mushroom Masters Tournament that took place here late last year… Well, she is back and brings some more mushroom goodness for you to try!

For the longest time I abhorred pasta in any shape or form. Those are carbs, only the weak willed eat carbs. I was a true victim of the Atkins diet craze and it had stuck with me for years. I wouldn’t scan over pasta on restaurant menus, I just neglected to even look at it altogether. The thought never crossed my mind that any pasta dish set forth by any chef (three Michelin starred or not) could possibly be over the moon good.

Then for some reason one day about three weeks after I had my second child, I decided it was high time I made my own pasta. I had a craving, and gosh darn it, I was going to fulfill that craving right now. I did not, however, own a pasta rolling machine. I decided I didn’t need it, it would be good exercise to roll out all that dough, and boy was I right! After that first time making my own pasta (about 8 months ago), I have made it about 6 times since. I cannot get over how different it is from store bought dried (or fresh!).

When I thought of what I could put into raviolis next, the first thing that came to mind was mushrooms. They are so very flavourful and absorb anything you put with them, intensifying all that delicious savoury goodness. Mixed with a little fresh herbs, wine and cream (and bacon!) what else could you possibly need?

This recipe may seem complex, so read it through first. Once the dough is resting, all you have to do is make the filling. Filling can be fun if you are serving this at a dinner party, get everyone involved and give everyone their own step. It makes the process go by much faster!

Mushroom Ravioli

For the pasta:
1 cup semolina flour
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp salt
4 eggs

1. In a large bowl, combine the two flours and salt.
2. Make a well in the flour and crack in the eggs.
3. Get messy! Dig in with your bare hands and squish and mix and mash until the egg and flour are completely incorporated. Continue to knead for about 10 minutes, or until the dough becomes smooth and elastic.
4. Form into a ball, cover with a damp kitchen towel and let rest for 30-90 minutes.
5. Cut the dough into two pieces and get yourself a small bowl of water.
6. On a heavily floured surface, roll out the dough until it’s almost see through. VERY thin. Cut into long strips with a pizza cutter or knife about 3 or 4 inches wide and then repeat in a perpendicular direction. you should be creating squares that are 3 to 4 inches.
7. Heap a large tbsp or so onto each square, wet the edges with water and place a second square over top. Pinch the edges together and set aside on another floured surface. You can cover with another damp kitchen towel here to prevent the pasta from drying out.
8. Continue until you run out of dough and filling.
9. To cook your pasta, boil a large pot filled with at least 8 cups of water and add about 1 tbsp of salt (make the water almost to ocean saltiness), bring to a boil, toss in the pasta and cook for about 4 minutes.
10. Remove and drain.

For the Filling:
2 tbsp butter
1/2 large onion, diced very fine
1 clove garlic, grated or minced
300g white or brown mushrooms, diced very fine
1 tsp fresh rosemary, finely minced
50-75g cream cheese

1. In a large, heavy bottomed sauté pan, heat the butter, garlic and onions.
2. Add the mushrooms and rosemary and continue to sauté until everything is cooked through, about 7 minutes.
3. Remove from heat and stir in the cream cheese. Set aside until cool and then fill your pasta!

For the Sauce:
1 clove garlic, minced or grated
1/4 cup butter
1 tbsp fresh rosemary, finely minced
kosher or sea salt to taste
fresh ground pepper to taste
35g cream cheese
1/4 cup white wine
4 strips thick cut bacon, diced

1. In a heavy bottomed sauté pan, cook your bacon until desired crispness, set aside on kitchen towels to drain.
2. Wipe out pan and heat butter and garlic until the butter has melted and begun to bubble.
3. Add in the rosemary, salt and pepper. Stir and cook 2 minutes.
4. Add the wine and reduce down by half.
5. Remove from heat and stir in the cream cheese. Toss hot, drained pasta fresh from the pot in the sauce. Plate, sprinkle with bacon and serve!

Thanks so much Elizabeth for being our guest.

Don’t forget to follow Elizabeth on her blog Guilty Kitchen, on Twitter and on Facebook.

Elizabeth will be back here again later in the year for another guest post and a delicious mushroom recipe, so stay tuned!

Highlights of the Week with Michelle

This first week working with Mushrooms Canada has been really interesting and informative. After getting adjusted to the office and some social networking, Brittany and I went to Piccioni Bros. Mushroom farm in Hamilton on Tuesday morning to go check out how they grow their mushrooms, and the process behind everything. I haven’t ever seen or been to a mushroom farm so I assumed that they grew outside, I was way off!!

I learned a lot of interesting facts about mushrooms that I didn’t know before, like how they double in size in 24 hours, and how the weather outside affects the growing process even though they grow indoors. The picking process is a really important job as well, because everything gets graded when the workers place the mushrooms in the containers and then the mushrooms are shipped to the stores. I was also very shocked when I found out that this farm ships out between 36,000- 39,000 lbs of mushrooms a week! I certainly learned that the growing and distribution procedure is a time consuming job that isn’t recognized.

I am excited to see what I learn about next week!

Behind the Scenes at Mushrooms Canada: Welcome Michelle Grundy!

I may have hinted yesterday on Twitter that I was giving a special little someone a farm tour, and that you would get to meet her very shortly. I like to make good on my promises, so I am very pleased to introduce you to Miss Michelle Grundy!

A few years ago we took on a work placement student from Conestoga College, and this year we thought “hey, what the heck… let’s do it again!”

Michelle will be helping me out for the next 5 weeks, so make sure you look for her post here every Friday!

So without further ado… Michelle!

Hello, my name is Michelle Grundy and I am currently enrolled at Conestoga College for Advertising. I am doing a 5 week job placement with Mushrooms Canada and will be helping out with the Mushrooms Go Pink 2011 campaign which will give me the opportunity to use the creative skills I have learned in the courses I have taken and it will give me lots of experience on how things work in the advertising/ marketing field once I graduate and am out looking for a job.

I was really interested in this job placement position because I feel that I will learn a lot about advertising and marketing from Brittany and also because we get to spend a weekend in Toronto at the Wine & Cheese Show in March, cooking different recipes for customers. Interacting with so many different people and being able to taste of the good food is just a bonus to this placement!

I would like to thank Brittany and Bill for having me as a trainee. Check out my blog every Friday as I will posting all of the different things I am learning during my 5 week placement.

Mushrooms Masters: A Tournament of Taste – Portabella Playoff

Mushrooms Masters: A Tournament of Taste
Welcome to the very first round of the Mushrooms Masters: A Tournament of Taste!

Let’s kick things off with a little introduction. What started as a friendly bet between representatives of a couple countries has quickly turned into a bigger event.

Canada, the US, and Australia have pitted 12 amazing food bloggers, 4 representing each country, against each other in this Tournament of Taste.
For 4 weeks, each country will offer up a delicious recipe from their food bloggers for voting on Tastespotting. Every week you can head on over and vote for Canada!
At the end of each week, a winning recipe/country will be announced.
So, without further ado, let’s get this thing started.
Competing in the Portabella Playoff, against American Blogger Sara from Sprouted Kitchen, and Australian Blogger Jules from Stone Soup, is the fabolous Angela from Oh She Glows
Oh She GlowsHello, my name is Angela Liddon. I am a spunky and passionate vegan bakery owner, healthy living writer, and photographer who found her glow with a vegan diet. Oh She Glows documents how I got my glow back, after years of depriving myself, and discovered that food can be fun. I tempt with delicious vegan recipes and mouth-watering photography and most of all, I show that Vegan doesn’t have to be a bad word.
Easy Stuffed Portabella Pizza in a Cashew Basil Cheese Sauce
These ridiculously cute and mouth-watering Portabella pizzas taste so much like the real thing you won’t believe they are vegan, gluten-free, and good for you! Shhh, don’t tell my husband.
Prep time: 10 minutes Cook time: 10-12 minutes.
• 8 Portabella mushrooms
• 2 cups pizza sauce
• Vegan Cashew Basil Cheese Sauce (see recipe below)
• 1/3 cup of each: red, green, orange pepper, diced
• 1/3 cup sweet onion, diced
• 2-3 large basil leaves, finely diced
• 1 tsp red pepper flakes
Directions: Preheat oven by setting the broiler on low. Take a baking sheet and cover with a silicone non-stick baking mat or parchment paper for easy clean up. Make your Vegan Cashew Basil cheese sauce by using the recipe below. Set aside. Remove stems of Portabellas and gently rub Portabellas with a wet cloth to clean. Place Portabellas ‘belly’ side up on the baking sheet. Spoon about 2 tablespoons of pizza sauce into each Portabella. Now spoon about 2 teaspoons of Vegan Cashew basil Cheese Sauce on top of the pizza sauce (see recipe below). Grab a cutting board and knife and chop the onion and pepper and then sprinkle onto Portabellas. Finally, shake on some red pepper flakes and sprinkle finely diced basil on top. Broil in the oven on the lowest temperature setting on the middle rack for about 10-12 minutes, watching closely as broiler temperatures vary. Serve immediately and enjoy! Serves 3-4.
Vegan Cashew Basil Cheese Sauce
• 1 cup raw cashews
• 1/3-1/2 tsp Himalayan sea salt, to taste
• 1/2 tsp cold-pressed sunflower oil
• 1 fresh basil leaf
• 1 small clove garlic
• 1.5 tbsp nutritional yeast
• 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Directions: Place 1 cup of raw cashews in a bowl of water, cover, and soak overnight in the fridge. When cashews are ready, drain and place all ingredients (cashews, Himalayan sea salt, cold-pressed sunflower oil, basil, garlic, nutritional yeast, and lemon juice) into a food processor and process until smooth, stopping to scrape sides of processor as necessary. Taste and adjust seasonings if necessary. Place any leftover cheese in a container in the fridge and enjoy with chopped vegetables, crackers, bread, and chips!
Sounds and looks delicious!
Head on over to Tastepotting to vote for Angela’s Easy Stuffed Portabella Pizza in a Cashew Basil Cheese Sauce Recipe now!

TIP: You can follow the contest by subscribing to Mushrooms Canada’s Blog Feed. Just click here to sign up! You don’t want to miss this contest!