Mushroom Duxelles

Holiday season is here, and I needed to make some hors d’oeuvres to  take to a party. Here’s a set of recipes using a simple French mushroom preparation two different ways. Makes about 2 cups.

2 lbs. crimini or white mushrooms, washed
3 oz. shallots, minced
1 oz. butter

Grind the mushrooms, or process in a food processor until similar in texture.

Mince the shallots, then heat a suitable pan over medium heat.

Melt the butter,

then add the shallots.

Cook, stirring to prevent burning, until the shallots and completely soft and starting to brown.

Add the mushrooms and stir, then increase the heat to high. Add a couple of pinches of salt, then cook until the mushrooms release all of their water.

Stir occasionally, and continue to cook until all of the water has boiled off.

You can stop now, but I usually reduce the heat to medium and cook until the mushrooms begin to brown and stick to the pan. The browning add additional flavor.

As the mushrooms brown, stir to scrape them from the pan. Continue doing this until you’re sick of it, then remove from the heat. This is the classic French mushroom duxelle. Next two recipes to use the duxelles, Mushroom puffs, a great hors d’oeuvre, and great cream of mushroom soup.


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David Gingrass is a food and beverage operations professional with a career spanning more than three decades. His fascination with and love for food, wine and entertaining allows him to view his work as both a vocation and an avocation. Gingrass graduated from the Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, New York then cooked in the Bay Area for two years before landing a job at Wolfgang Puck’s original Spago Restaurant in West Hollywood. There he learned to make the signature breads and sausages that he became known for at Postrio and Hawthorne Lane. He was soon promoted to kitchen manager and managed the operational and expense control aspects of Puck’s iconic restaurant for the next four years. Gingrass returned to San Francisco in 1989 when Puck tapped him and his then-wife Anne to open Postrio, Puck’s third restaurant and his first outside of Los Angeles. Postrio opened to rave reviews and soon became the #1 popular Bay Area restaurant in the prestigious Zagat survey. Five and a half years later, the opportunity to open a restaurant of his own presented itself. Hawthorne Lane opened in 1995 and was a San Francisco dining institution for over twelve years, catering to the likes of Julia Child, Jacques Pepin, Mayor Willie Brown, James Carville, President Clinton and First Lady Hilary Clinton. He closed Hawthorne Lane at the end of its fifteen-year lease in 2009 to build a consulting practice for the hospitality industry, sharing his wealth of culinary and operational experiences with new and existing restaurants, assisting them to become successful and profitable.