Individual mushroom and onion confit Charlottes

Individual mushroom and onion confit Charlottes

Leiths How to Cook
Peter Cassidy


Quantity Ingredient
100g butter
25g dried porcini
18 small to medium chestnut mushrooms
thyme sprigs
1/2 shallot
1/2 garlic clove
50ml red wine
22 thin slices white bread
1 quantity Caramelised onion confit
125ml madeira
200ml Vegetable stock
a little bit cornflour
freshly ground black pepper
watercress sprigs, to finish


  1. Heat the oven to 200ºC. Melt 25 g of the butter in a small saucepan; keep it warm.
  2. Soak the dried porcini in boiling water for 30 minutes to rehydrate. Ensure they are fully submerged, but with only just enough water to cover them.
  3. Remove the stalks from the chestnut mushrooms and reserve them. Wipe the mushroom caps to remove any grit. Brush them with some of the melted butter and place rounded side down on a baking sheet. Finely chop enough thyme leaves to give you ½ teaspoon and sprinkle over the mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. Roast in the oven until the mushrooms are tender, about 20–30 minutes.
  4. Chop the reserved mushroom stalks finely. Peel and finely dice the shallot, and peel and crush the garlic. Drain the porcini, reserving the soaking liquor, and chop them finely.
  5. Heat 25 g butter in a frying pan and, when foaming, add the shallot and sauté for 2 minutes, then add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Increase the heat and add the chopped mushrooms and porcini and sauté quickly until they have lost volume and all the water they release has evaporated. Add the wine and reduce the liquid to ½ tablespoon. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Melt the remaining butter and brush 6 dariole moulds or deep ramekins with butter twice, allowing the first coating to set before re-buttering.
  7. Use 12 slices of the bread to cut out 6 small discs of bread to fit in the bottom of each dariole, and 6 larger discs to be used to cover the filling once the Charlottes are assembled. Cut the crusts off the remaining 10 slices of bread and cut them into quarters, then cut each quarter into 2 on a slight diagonal. Brush the bread pieces with the melted butter.
  8. Lay a small disc in the bottom of each of the 6 darioles, then place the irregular pieces of bread around the sides of the dariole, placing the narrow end towards the bottom and overlapping each piece slightly.
  9. Layer the roasted mushrooms rounded side down in the darioles, alternating with the sautéed mushroom mixture and caramelised onion confit, until they are almost full. You should fit 3 mushrooms in each. Top with the remaining large discs of bread and press down slightly to help seal.
  10. Stand the darioles on a baking sheet and bake in the oven for 25–30 minutes until the bread is golden and crisp.
  11. Meanwhile, to make the sauce, strain the reserved mushroom liquor through a piece of muslin to remove any grit. Pour the Madeira into a small saucepan and reduce by two-thirds. Add 125 ml of the mushroom soaking liquor and all the vegetable stock and simmer gently for 10–15 minutes until the flavours are combined. You might need to add a little more mushroom liquor. Taste the sauce and adjust the seasoning. Slake the cornflour with a little water, stir into the sauce and cook for a minute or two to thicken it slightly, to a light, syrupy consistency.
  12. When the Charlottes are cooked, allow them to rest for 2–3 minutes before inverting them onto serving plates. Spoon a little of the sauce around the Charlottes and serve garnished with watercress.
Leiths School of food and wine
cookery course
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