This mushroom strudel, made with sautéed mushrooms and onions encased in layers of phyllo pastry, is a savory version relying on simple store-bought pastry. An amazing side dish, entrée, or appetizer.
Having lived for a couple of years in Vienna, I knew strudel only as an excellent dessert, filled with apples, pears, sour cherries, or a paste of poppy seeds. The idea of making it savory, with a sautéed mushroom filling, is new for me, and here it is. When feeling lazy, I use bought phyllo pastry, but if you are a skillful maker of the original strudel pastry, feel free.–Antonio Carluccio
LC Phyllo Phobia Note
Truthfully, just about anything can be made more enticing when encased in crisp, crackly, butter-drenched layers of phyllo. And we could all use some of that. So while phyllo phear, uh, fear is understandable, it’s also unwarranted. All you have to remember is to keep the phyllo covered, otherwise it will dry out, which is what causes rips and tears. For such little effort, you get a phenom trick to tuck in your apron pocket. Here it elevates simple sautéed shrooms to a party-worthy hors d’oeuvre. You can also stack buttered phyllo on top of leftover stew, toss it in the oven to warm, and call it pot pie. Or dab some jelly or nutella in the center of a sheet, fold it over and over into a triangle, and slide it in the toaster oven for an instant turnover. Need more ideas to entice you past your phyllo phobia? Ask. We’re full of ’em.
For the mushroom strudel pastry
- 12 sheets phyllo pastry thawed if frozen
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter melted
- 1 large egg beaten
For the mushroom strudel filling
- 1 pound fresh mushrooms preferably a mix of wild and cultivated, trimmed and finely chopped
- 1 medium onion finely chopped
- 3 tablespoons butter
- Lots of freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon dry sherry
- 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
- Leaves from 1 sprig marjoram
- 4 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Prepare the mushroom strudel phyllo
- Preheat the oven to 400°F (202°C).
- Remove 3 sheets of phyllo at a time from the package, keeping the remaining sheets tightly wrapped so they don’t dry out. Place 1 sheet of phyllo on a cutting board, baking sheet, or sheet of parchment paper. Lightly brush both sides of another sheet of phyllo with some of the melted butter, then place it on top of the first sheet and cover with the third sheet. Repeat this process 3 times to make 4 separate phyllo stacks. Cover each with a damp towel while you prepare the filling.
Make the mushroom strudel filling
- Coarsely chop the mushroom caps. Cook the onion in the butter until softened, 3 to 5 minutes.
- Add the mushrooms and nutmeg and sauté over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the sherry and cook over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes.
- Stir in the flour, marjoram, and some salt and pepper and cook, stirring, for another minute or so. Remove from the heat and let cool.
Assemble and bake the mushroom strudel
- Butter a baking sheet with some of the remaining melted butter from the phyllo. Place 1 of the 4 stacks of phyllo on the buttered baking sheet. Lightly brush the perimeter of the phyllo with the beaten egg.
- Spoon 1/4 of the mushroom mixture in the center of the phyllo and sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of the Parmesan. Fold the sides of the phyllo in over the mushroom mixture, then fold the phyllo-encased mushrooms over and over into a neat parcel. Brush the side of the strudel with the seam with more of the beaten egg, then turn it over so that the seam is on the bottom. Brush the top with egg. Repeat to make 3 more strudels.
- Bake the strudel until golden and crisp, about 15 minutes. Serve warm, sliced into narrow strips, if desired.
Recipe Testers’ Reviews
This was a big hit, with not a crumb left on any of our plates. It’s a fairly simple appetizer to make—you just need to work quickly so the phyllo doesn’t dry out. The combination of mushrooms, sherry, and marjoram made this a very savory appetizer that can be made any time of year, depending on the mushrooms you can find at your grocers. (I chose portobello, cremini, and shiitakes.) I wanted more mushrooms and less dough, though. Next time, I’ll make more mushrooms, spread them over the phyllo, and roll them up instead of wrapping the dough as suggested in the recipe.
This mushroom strudel was very easy to make without a lot of ingredients that I didn’t already have on hand. I used 1 pound of mixed mushrooms, including enoki, baby bella, shiitake and cremini. I cut both the mushrooms and the onion into medium sized pieces—not too big to make eating the strudel difficult but also not too small to turn into a mushy mess during cooking.
The instructions are incredibly easy to follow, making this a cinch to pull together quickly. I used nearly 2 teaspoons of nutmeg but I might use more next time; it didn’t seem to have a significant taste of nutmeg.
I served this as a side dish with roast duck and the strudel served 4 people perfectly.
This was my first time using frozen phyllo. Truth be told, I’ve had a box in the freezer for the past 2.5 years–a parting gift from a friend who was cleaning out her freezer before a move. I should have broken out this ingredient ages ago.
As a frozen phyllo newb, I was anxious about ruining the dough. There’s nothing to fear here–what a snap! The instructions for layering the dough were completely foreign to me but worked perfectly. I used shiitakes and creminis for the filling. Sake and fresh thyme were subbed in for sherry and marjoram as that’s what I had on hand. Delicious.
I had 4 servings from each packet for a total of 12 servings but these could be cut 6 to a packet, no sweat.
I’m looking forward to doing this one again, and coming up with other filling ideas. I will also be taking a stab at spanakopita.
This delicious savory mushroom strudel can be served as a main course with a green salad, or as a starter or appetizer. The crisp phyllo pastry contrasts with the creaminess of the filling, which has a fragrant taste from mushrooms and Parmesan.
Pay attention to the size of the phyllo sheets so that the amount of dough is balanced with the filling. I suggest 20-by-30-cm sheets.
This serves 4 as a main course. I used a mixture of portobello and shiitake mushrooms, 2 tsp grated nutmeg, white rice vinegar instead of sherry, and fresh oregano instead of marjoram.
Originally published November 17, 2019