One dairy that we are particularly fond of is Bellwether Farms. Cindy Callahan and her two sons, Liam and Brett, produce outstanding sheep’s milk and cow’s milk cheeses at Bellwether, including fromage blanc. It is a fresh, tangy cheese, not unlike fresh ricotta. In fact, you can use ricotta as a substitute for fromage blanc in this recipe. Just wrap the ricotta in cheesecloth and hang it over a bowl in the refrigerator overnight to eliminate any excess moisture.—Dolores and Jack Cakebread
1 large leek, white part only, julienned (2 cups)
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt plus additional for seasoning
4 ounces fromage blanc
2 tablespoons finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Freshly ground black pepper
18 large cremini mushrooms, wiped clean and stemmed
White truffle oil (optional)
1. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C). Brush a baking sheet with olive oil.
2. Heat the leeks and olive oil in a small saute pan over medium heat. Add the 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring often to prevent browning, for 8 to 10 minutes, until wilted and tender, but not browned. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool.
3. Add the fromage blanc and Parmigiano to the leeks and stir to mix well. Season with salt and pepper. Scoop up about 1 heaping teaspoon of the mixture and spoon into the bottom of the mushrooms. Set on the prepared baking sheet.
4. Bake in the top third of the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, until the cheese mixture begins to brown and the mushrooms become tender to the bite. Transfer to a serving plate and drizzle with a few drops of truffle oil. Enjoy with a chardonnay with great structure and rich fruit flavors.
Recipe © 2003 Dolores and Jack Cakebread. All rights reserved.