Behold the julienne-a molten hot, cheese crusted, creamy mushroom extravaganza. Just about every hunter of Eastern European descent I’ve talked to has told me about this dish in some way shape or form, and for good reason.
If you look around, there’s plenty of recipes for mushroom julienne out there, most using button mushrooms. When I first heard about this and wrote it down in my diary of recipes to make, I knew that cultivated mushrooms wouldn’t have a place in it. The way I see it, if I wanted to make a julienne it needed to be worthy of the name. After reading Valentina Pavlovna describe the way Russians love their Borovik (a species of bolete) I knew only some perfect bolete buttons would do.
If you’re a mushroom hunter from the Midwest, you know it’s nigh impossible to find bug-less baby boletes. Well it took a couple years, and perfect timing, but I got some. Suffice to say, it was worth the wait.
It’s rich as hell, so this is one of those things you make once in a while, but it is definitely a great way to enjoy some fresh boletes. If they’re young enough, they’ll keep their crunchy texture, which is really something to savor. In all reality though, just about any mushroom that likes cream (exclude matsutake here) would be great cooked like this.
I chose young porcini for this, but plenty of mushrooms or a blend would be great too-use your imagination. You can vary the recipe any number of ways by using different cheeses, herbs, or whatever you like.
I really like the depth that using two hard grating cheeses brings to this, using soft cheeses like mozzarella that get stringy would be a bit much here, I think, but chevre or another goat cheese would be a great addition.
- 4 oz young porcini or other bolete buttons, cleaned, trimmed, and sliced 1/4 in thick
- 3 tablespoons oil or lard
- 1/4 cup yellow sweet onion, diced 1/4 inch
- 1 tablespoon green garlic, diced 1/4 in (chopped regular garlic can be substituted)
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 2 teaspoons all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup sour cream
- 1/4 cup grated grana padano (parmesan can be substituted)
- 1/4 cup grated gruyere
- 1/4 cup dry white wine
- Kosher salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
- 1/8 teaspoon fresh grated nutmeg
- Preheat the oven to 375.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil or lard in a saute pan until nearly smoking. Add the porcini and cook over medium-high heat until browned and caramelized, stirring occasionally, about 5 minutes. Remove the porcini from the pan and season with a pinch of salt and pepper, then add the remaining tablespoon of oil and saute the onion and garlic on medium-low heat, or until translucent and completely cooked through.
- Add the porcini and any juice they’re given off back to the pan with the onions, add the fresh thyme, then add the two tablespoons of butter and heat to melt. Stir in the nutmeg and flour and cook for a couple more minutes, stirring occasionally to remove the raw flavor from the flour. De-glaze the pan with the wine, then stir in the sour cream and cheeses. Double check the seasoning for salt and pepper, and adjust if needed.
- At this point the mixture should be thick and creamy, with a consistency a bit thicker than cream sauce. Transfer the mixture to an oven safe casserole and bake until bubbly and browned, about 15 minutes depending on if you have a convection oven or not. Allow the julienne to cool for 5-10 minutes before serving.