I had a bag of big, beautiful portobello mushrooms from Whole Foods just begging to be stuffed with something delicious. I typically do a spinach artichoke stuffing with portobellos but I wanted to try something new and a little more exciting.
On my way to the grocery store I got the idea to use a crab based stuffing. I rarely cook with crab at home so it sounded different and appetizing. After a quick Google search on my iPhone, I decided to go with a spin on this recipe from Taste of Home. Side note: I don’t know what I would do without my iPhone and iPad when cooking and researching recipes.
I started by removing the stem from the portobellos and then wiping them down with a damp cloth to clean them. I then drizzled the mushroom caps in a light coat of olive oil before placing them cap side down on a baking sheet to prepare them for stuffing. The crab cake filling was very simple to assemble and only required that you cook one thing…the onion mixture. Everything else was combined in a bowl and mixed together.
The beauty of this kind of dish is that you can put it in the oven and have 20 minutes to finish your sides, set the table, clean the kitchen, enjoy a glass of wine, etc. It also makes this the perfect kind of dish for entertaining because they don’t require a lot of attention once you get them stuffed. I think you could definitely do that the morning before or even the day before you plan on serving them.
I made a few modifications to the original recipe and mainly to the seasonings. I really enjoy lemon flavors with seafood so I added lemon pepper and fresh lemon juice to the preparation and finishing of this dish. I also incorporated some shallots into the onion mixture.
Because I am totally crazy about the appearance of food on the plate I decided to serve the mushrooms with yellow saffron rice and roasted okra. I thought it would be a pretty color combination on my blue plate. This is definitely one of those dishes that you “mmm” your way through. I think I put my fork down after every single bite and said, “oh my god this is so good.”
These stuffed mushrooms look a lot more labor intensive and complicated than they are. Honestly, the hardest part about this recipe is ponying up the cash for the premium lump crab but I promise it’s worth it!
Crab Cake Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
(Recipe adapted from Taste of Home)
6 large portobello mushrooms
1/2 cup finely chopped sweet onion
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
8 ounces light cream cheese, softened
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup panko bread crumbs
1/2 cup plus extra for topping
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1 teaspoon lemon pepper (salt-free…adjust salt ratio if your lemon pepper seaoning is not salt-free)
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
12 ounces lump crabmeat, drained if canned
Paprika for topping
Extra lemon wedges for serving
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. If desired, prepare a baking dish by lining with foil, shiny side down, for easy cleanup.
Remove mushroom stems and wipe down mushroom caps with a damp cloth to clean. Once caps are clean, lightly drizzle them with olive oil and gently wipe to coat. Place mushrooms cap side down in baking dish.
Sautee onions and shallots with olive oil over medium heat until soft and lightly browned. In a medium bowl, combine cream cheese, egg, bread crumbs, cheese, lemon juice and seasonings. Gently fold in crab and onion mixture.
Evenly divide crab mixture between mushrooms and lightly drizzle with olive oil. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and paprika and place in oven. Bake uncovered for about 20 minutes or until mushrooms are tender and the topping is golden brown.
Yield: 6 main course servings