Chanterelle pudding is an old-school mushroom recipe from the one and only Richard Olney-one of the defining authors of modern French Cuisine (back in the era of Julia Child and James Beard). In his most famous book, Simple French Food, Olney shares a recipe for “mushroom pudding”, a sort of side dish or casserole made by mixing a healthy amount of chopped mushrooms with bechamel, eggs and a little parmesan cheese.
It’s a rich, filling side dish, and a great way to use up mushrooms of any kind that you have. I used chanterelles, but other mushrooms, especially chunky ones like porcini would be great too, or any sort of wild mushroom duxelles you have laying around. Serve it with a green salad to lighten it up.
Richard Olney's Chanterelle Mushroom Pudding
- 20 oz wild mushrooms especially chanterelles
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter or oil
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt plus more to taste
- ¼ cup dry white wine
- ¼ cup minced shallots
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 1 cup half and half
- 3 Tablespoons all purpose flour or equivalent
- Fresh grated nutmeg to taste
- 2 large eggs
- 2 oz good parmesan cheese
- 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
- Wash and dry the chanterelles, then chop medium-fine. Heat the chanterelles and salt in a 10 inch skillet, covered, cooking until their liquid has evaporated.
- Add 1 tablespoon of butter and stir, scraping up any browned bits.
- Add the wine, stir, and turn the pan off.
- Meanwhile, sweat the shallots in the 3 tablespoons of butter, then add the flour, stir, and gradually add the cold half and half, heat, stirring aggressively with a spoon or spatula until thickened.
- Preheat the oven to 400.
- Season the bechamel with nutmeg and pepper, then mix in the chanterelles and cheese. Let the mixture cool for 5 minutes, then beat in the cheese, parsley and eggs.
- Liberally butter a pie dish, then place in a larger pan, put in the oven, and, using a pitcher, pour warm water into the pan in the oven to come up 2/3 of the pie dish. Bake for 30 minutes or until just set.