In the culinary world of edible mushrooms, only one can be called king: what Italian chefs affectionately call “porcini” (piglets). Due to the strong nutty flavor, this is an incredibly popular gourmet mushroom and Italians have made an art of cooking with porcini, both dried and fresh.
However, you don’t have to search far for an Italian gourmet restaurant to enjoy these magnificent fungi. With today’s recipe all you need to do is to put on your chef’s hat and get ready for a full culinary experience in your own kitchen. The combination of porcini couscous pies with the melting Fontina cheese will bring the gourmet tastes of the best Italian restaurant in your table at no time.
Recipe by Giallo Zafferano’ Simona Novarini
Here is how to prepare these delicious Martino Couscous small pies with porcini and Fontina cheese
Ingredients for 4 small pies:
- 100 ml of water
- 100 grams of Martino Couscous
- 1 clove of garlic
- 10 grams of dried porcini mushrooms
- 1 pinch of dried parsley
- 3 eggs
- 80 grams of Fontina cheese
- Extra virgin olive oil
For Fontina fondue:
- 400 grams of Fontina cheese
- 200 ml of cooking cream
- Salt to taste
Rehydrate the porcini mushrooms:
First put the dried mushrooms in a cup of warm water and let them soak until they are softened.
Room temperature water will soften the mushrooms and many people believe it extracts less of the flavor from the mushrooms.
Once fully hydrated, give the soaked mushrooms a good rinse under running water to remove any hidden, stubborn grit.
Hydrate the Couscous:
In a medium, heavy-bottomed saucepan over medium heat, add 100 ml of water, 1 teaspoon of salt and 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and bring everything to a simmer.
When already simmering, remove the saucepan from the heat and add 100 grams of Martino’s Couscous. Cover with a lid and let the couscous sit for 4-5 minutes until the water is completely absorbed and the couscous is fully hydrated.
Fluff with the help of a fork. This will remove any lumps and separate the delicate grains without crushing them to give the couscous a light, fluffy texture. Let the couscous cool down.
Prepare the Porcini Paste:
In saucepan pour 2-3 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, add the garlic clove and let the oil heat in medium to high temperature. Then, toss the soaked porcini mushrooms in your saucepan. Add a pinch of salt, a pinch of dried parsley, stir and cook for about 10-15 minutes. If you notice that the mushrooms are drying out too much, you can add 1-2 tablespoons of their soaking water.
When fully cooked, add the porcini mixture in a food processor and blend well until you obtain an amalgamated paste.
Prepare the pies:
Lightly beat 3 eggs white and yolk, add them to the couscous and stir well. Add the porcini paste, 80 grams of diced Fontina cheese and a pinch of salt. Stir gently with a wooden spoon until all the ingredients are well mixed.
Grease well 4 small baking dishes and fill them with the freshly prepared couscous mixture. Level the surface by pressing lightly with a spoon.
Place the baking dishes on a baking tray and bake the delicious porcini pies in a preheated oven at 180°C for about 10 minutes. You will know they are ready when the pies become firm and take a light brown color.
Prepare the Fontina fondue cream:
In a saucepan add 200 ml of cooking cream, place it over low heat and bring it to a simmer. When ready add 400 grams of diced Fontina cheese and a pinch of salt. Keep mixing until the cheese is completely melted. You now have a creamy fondue ready to serve with those mouth watering couscous pies!
In a porcelain serving dish add the four couscous porcini pies. With the help of a spoon pour 1-2 tablespoons of fondue on top of each pie. Serve while still warm.
There is no need to travel a thousand miles or to spend a fortune on expensive restaurants: with this recipe you can become the master chef in your own kitchen! Go ahead try it out, experiment, enjoy your delicious creations and don’t forget to subscribe to receive more amazing recipes directly in your inbox.
Finally, as all gourmet dishes require, enjoy this amazing porcini couscous pies with a glass of your favorite white wine and leave us a comment to tell us about this all-senses culinary experience.