Party Hardy Rock n’ Roll

I would like to take you all into the way-back machine. You’ll be shocked to know (yeah right) that I come from a long line of ladies who can boss around a kitchen and are famous for their mad party-throwing skills. Imagine, if you will, the tiny future bacon princess (that’s me!) running underfoot, dragging a chair to the counter so I can watch my mama, hard at work making one of her famous party dishes. For a time, my parents even ran their own catering company. Cookin’ and eatin’ you see is in my DNA!

One of the staples that kitchen boss Mom would make was her crab-stuffed mushrooms. She would stuff hundreds of little fungi caps and send them out to the starving masses only to have the plate return, empty, moments later. So, clearly, it’s one of my go-to party platters as well.

Recently I had the honor of hosting a baby shower for my former partner, Kathryn. In the spirit of a divide-and-conquer approach, each of us opened our arsenal of crowd-pleasers (because people, you never ever argue with a pregnant woman with knife skills when she says she wants to cook things too!). So here you go, Mom’s famous crab stuffed mushrooms, just for you!
Crab Stuffed Mushrooms
–1 lb. mushrooms (about 3 dozen), washed and dried, stems removed
–4 TBSP butter
–1/4 cup finely chopped green onions
–garlic, finely minced
–1 1/2 cups bread crumbs, finely minced
–1 TBSP Worcestershire
–salt and black pepper
–shredded mozzarella (no more than 1 cup)
–2 cans lump white crab meat, drained, rinsed, and minced

Take the mushroom stems and finely chop enough stems to measure about 1/2 cup. Melt 3 TBSP of the butter in a large skillet or frying pan (the one I used had deep sides to allow me to stir the mixture without slopping over the sides). Stir in the chopped mushroom stems, garlic, and green onion, and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring regularly.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the breadcrumbs, Worcestershire, a pinch of salt, a few turns of cracked black pepper, and the crab meat.

Melt the remaining 1 TBSP butter in a shallow baking pan. Fill the mushroom caps with the stuffing mixture. Place them filled side up in the baking pan and sprinkle them with the cheese. Bake for 15 minutes at 350 degrees, then turn the broil setting on and broil them for 1-2 minutes to brown the tops. These are best served warm. You can prep them and stuff them the day before or earlier in the day and then sprinkle with cheese and bake when you are ready to serve.

Bonus: Here I am enjoying all the treats from the party. Cheers!

Dammit Jim, I’m a cook, not a doctor…
Time: 45 minutes
Serves: About 36 mushrooms
Calories: About 47 per mushroom

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