Broccoli and Cheddar Stuffed Portobellos

Mmmmmmmm.  A few of my favorite things: mushrooms, fresh broccoli, and ANYTHING with cheeeeese.  Put them all together -- Broccoli and Cheddar Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms!  This recipe also can double as two recipes, because in the end, when you have left over broccoli-cheddar mixture, you can add a little water, put it in a saucepan, and turn it into broccoli and cheddar soup!

What You'll Need:
4 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup shallots, chopped
2 cups broccoli, chopped
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
3/4 water
12 ounces, sharp cheddar (8-oz, cubed -- 4-oz. sliced thin)
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 teaspoon, flour
4 Portobello mushrooms caps, large (or, I guess you could use about 10-12 small caps)
Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper

In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat.  Add chopped shallots, and cook for about 6 minutes, or until shallots are soft and translucent.  Then, add two cups of chopped broccoli, 1/2 cup of heavy cream, and 1/2 cup of water.  Cook broccoli down until it becomes soft, about 10-12 minutes, stirring occasionally.  After the broccoli cooks down, the liquid in the pan will have reduced.  At this point, add the last 1/4 cup of heavy cream and last 1/4 cup of water to the pan and add cubed cheese, a few at a time.

Add the last 2 tablespoons of butter and continue to stir (figure-eights is a good method), incorporating the cheese and butter until both melt through.  Once both are melted throughout, sprinkle flour onto the mixture and mix.  Reserve the mixture on the stove, over very low heat, stirring occasionally to ensure the cheese does not stick to the skillet.

Meanwhile, de-stem the portobello caps and scrape "gills" off of the underside of the mushroom until there's a semi-smooth surface there. (Be careful, as you can see I work too fast, and I broke some pieces from one of the mushrooms!)  Place the mushrooms on a baking sheet, coated with olive oil, salt and pepper.  Roasted in a 400-degree oven for about 10 minutes, or until the mushrooms caps become softer. (But not too soft! You still want them to keep their shape so you can stuff them and the mix doesn't fall out.)  You're basically just roasting them to take away the "bite" and to add flavor to them.  Another tip, if you would like, add some sliced tomato before you roast them!

By now, the mixture should have thickened.  Remove the mushrooms from the oven and generously spoon the mixture into the caps.  Top the mixture with the sliced cheddar and return to the oven, just until cheese has melted on top, about 7 more minutes.

Remove from the oven, and ENJOY :)

If you are taking these to a party, I would suggest using the small mushroom caps.  It will be a little more time consuming to fill them, but it will be a nice presentation, and they will be "finger food", instead of needing a knife and fork.


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