Please cast your vote for my recipe to make it the winner of the Vidalia Onion Committee V Culinary Challenge Facebook page. Select "Vote Now" and look for the Summer Flower Blooms with Sweet Vidalia Onions and Savory Mushrooms recipe.
These are like blooms of summer flowers. The sweetness from the carefully caramelized vidalia onions pairs perfectly with the savory umami flavor of the saute crimini mushrooms. I prefer to use vidalia onions in this case because of the natural sweetness of the vidalia onions. They caramelized so perfectly and the natural sweetness is intense yet mellow...simply wonderful. There's no need for added sugar at all! Paired with a savory mushroom saute with parsley and hint of chilli flakes, its a mouthful of perfect sweet and savory goodness.
For the flower cups, I prefer to use phyllo pastry in the case rather than the thicker egg wonton wrappers because I didn't want the cups to outshine the filling. The thinness of the phyllo pastry adds just enough crunch to complement each bite but does not overwhelm each bite with too much dough and too little filling.
Make them bigger for a main dish or make them smaller as a perfect party finger food that is sure to impress. You can even make the filling ahead, say the day before your party. Then bake the cups the morning of. When it's time for the party, fill the cups and warm them up in the oven for about 5 minutes and you are all good to go.
Ingredients (makes about 18 bigger entree size cups to 26 smaller finger-food size cups):
1. 4 tablespoons grapeseed oil
2. 2 medium to large onions, thinly sliced
3. 1 lb crimini mushrooms, diced
4. 1/3 cup curly parsley, chopped
5. 1/2 teaspoon chili flakes
6. Salt and pepper to taste
7. Phyllo pastry sheets, stacked together in 4 layers and cut into squares of 3X3 inches
8. Truffle oil (optional for drizzle)
1. In a shallow saute pan, heat 2 tablespoons of grapeseed oil over medium/high heat. Sweat/Saute onions until they get translucent (edges of some pieces might brown a little and that's ok. In fact, that's what you want!). Then turn the heat to medium/low and slowly caramelize until onions are soft and has a light brown color and taste absolutely delicious. Season with salt as you go along as necessary and add water to the pan as necessary to prevent onions from drying out.
2. Remove the onions and set aside. In the same pan, add the remaining 2 tablespoons of grapeseed oil on high heat and saute mushrooms until tender and brown for about 8-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and chili flakes. Then add parsley at the end to lightly wilt. Leave mushrooms in pan and set aside.
3. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
4. Each flower cup consist of 4 to 5 pieces of phyllo pastry squares that you have already cut out. This is how you assemble the phyllo sheets to create the flower cup. Lay one sheet of phyllo square on your work surface and brush lightly with some grapeseed oil. Then lay the next sheet on top at a slight angle from the sheet below. Repeat for the next 2 to 3 sheets.
5. Line the inside of a mini muffin tin with each stack of sheets to form a cup and bake blind at 375 degrees Fahreheit.
6. Remove the flower cups and fill them with a teaspoon of caramelized onions and saute mushrooms each.
7. Drizzle with truffle oil if desired and serve warm. If not using truffle oil, you also have the option to serve these at room temperature.
Trust me....once you start munching on these darlings, you cannot stop. If you like this recipe, please cast your vote on the Vidalia Onion Committee V Culinary Challenge Facebook page. Select "Vote Now" and look for the Summer Flower Blooms with Sweet Vidalia Onions and Savory Mushrooms recipe.