Sunday, December 28, 2008

Pancetta- Wrapped Mushrooms

We have a 'Gourmet Club' in our neighborhood with eleven couples participating. They're all hand-picked, fun friends who are into food and entertaining. We meet monthly, with couples attending as they're available. Usually we end up with 16 or so people at a single gathering. The hosts plan the menu, prepare the main dish and then hand out additional recipes for attendees to bring.

December's holiday party was rather large with twenty of us. Since 20 is tough to seat for dinner, the hosts went with a more casual theme- a couple different kinds of fondue and lots of other appetizers. My task: to bring sixty Pancetta- Wrapped Mushrooms. I was delighted to find that this was a simple appetizer to prepare for this busy time of year.

I was thrilled to find that this recipe called for fresh sage as I have loads of it growing like weeds in my courtyard.

Regular, medium-sized white mushrooms are all you need (I used a few baby portobellos too). They just get a quick wash and a trimmed stem.

The sage leaf is simply laid on top of a mushroom.

A piece of pancetta (or bacon) is wrapped tightly around. I left the sage leaf peeking out of the side since I wanted that color to show a bit.

All is secured with a toothpick pushed down into the mushroom from the top.

Here they are.... awaiting the oven.

They're baked for about 25 minutes, until the bacon becomes crisp and browned. Sadly, I didn't capture a beautiful picture of the finished product... we were eager to eat and the lighting was dimmed for the party. They were excellent, and they were gobbled up rather quickly by our gourmet friends.

Our hosts had a fabulous idea for a holiday 'gift' activity. They had each of us bring a wrapped toy that represented our personality. We then took turns unwrapping the toys and guessed which of our friends we thought the toy matched with. My wrapped toy wasn't hard to guess... an Easy-Bake Oven, and my gregarious, speaker husband wasn't too tough either... a play microphone. The activity generated a lot of laughs, and we ended up with 40 toys to donate to charity.

The Pancetta- Wrapped Mushrooms recipe can be found HERE.
Lots more finger food appetizer recipes can be found HERE.

32 comments:

Robin Sue said...

I love Gourmet Club! We have been in one for about 5 years now with the same people and we have so much fun. The mushrooms look wonderful!

Gloria said...

Absolutely nice and yummy! Gloria

noble pig said...

That is such a great, great idea with the toys! And the mushrooms look great as well...easy and perfect for a large crowd.

Michael said...

Never have I seen such perfect and perfectly homogeneous sage leaves. How did you get those? They look like little yummy soldiers in a row. Great pic.

CONSUMED(I,THIS)

Snooky doodle said...

Seems such great fun :) the mushrooms look so nice and really easy to while being so eye catching :) thnks

Sharon said...

Looks like a fun & easy appetizer to make! I'll have to try this for the next holiday party...New Years! Hope you enjoyed the holidays.

Brindi said...

Loved the idea for the mushrooms. I always have an abundance of sage in the herb garden. I will have to try this soon.

Kevin said...

What a great way to enjoy mushrooms!

Gretchen Noelle said...

I love the toy part, that is really sweet and such a good way to collect for donation! These mushrooms look really adorable all wrapped up!

Katrina said...

Yum to the shrooms.
What a fun gift "exchange" idea. And funny about the Easy Bake Oven, which is just what I would have picked for me and everyone would have guessed that. But even the microphone is a good one for my husband, a professor--that or maybe something really boring, like a kids bookkeeping kit/desk-I've seen those. My husband teaches accounting. zzzzz jk
The club sounds so fun!
Happy New Year!

Ruthie said...

What a great gift exchange idea!

Ivy said...

What a fun gathering this was and your mushrooms sound great.

HoneyB said...

Yummy!

Reeni said...

What a great appetizer! I love the toy idea, how fun!

Patsyk said...

Great appy! Sounds like a wonderful gathering, and I love the toy donation idea... that must have been so fun!

alexandra's kitchen said...

Oh, this sounds like a great dish. I'm meeting two friends for New Year's Eve this year and we are making a feast, which we've outlined on a collaborative Google doc. I think I might have to add these mushrooms to the menu. Happy New Year RecipeGirl!

That Girl said...

Sage is truly underused and adds such a great flavor!

Bellini Valli said...

What a fun way to give to charity over the holidays. I wish there was a gourmey club close to here..perhaps I need to start one!!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Yummy. Anything wrapped in bacon gets kudos in my book.

SIXTY of them? You are a patient woman.

Judy@nofearentertaining said...

What a great idea!!! Those mushrooms look so good!

Ari (Baking and Books) said...

I bet those tasted incredible! And I love that holiday game, what fun. Yes, Easy Bake Oven does seem to fit your personality, lol. :)

Ellie from Kitchen Caravan said...

Great gift idea! This year our family decided to have a book exchange. We're always looking for a new gifting idea so I'm going to keep the toy game in the back of my mind for next year.

By the way, the mushrooms look wonderful. Just so happens I have loads of mushrooms and sage. Perfect timing!

Bren said...

did you say you have loads and tons of sage growing in your yard!!?! Lucky you! I looove sage. Nice work on the mushrooms. Great poppers for party's.

Maria said...

Perfect for parties!! Happy Holidays to you! Keep the wonderful recipes coming:)

Half Baked said...

The mushrooms look like a great appetizer! Love the idea of a Gourmet Club and the gift exchange sound too fun!

Stacey Snacks said...

RG,
I can't believe your sage is so beautiful! Each leaf perfect.
The mushrooms look nice and I am envious that you have a gourmet club with 22 people!
Wow!
Happy New Year!
Stacey Snacks

Bunny said...

What a great appetizer, I'm think New Years Eve food!

Ingrid said...

What a fun idea! Both the gourmet club and the donated gift one!

Your mushrooms look great! Everyone except the baby LOVES mushrooms!

Happy 2009!
~ingrid

Proud Italian Cook said...

I swore I commented here, I looked at these mushrooms 3 times! Yumm! Love the sage, and envious of your club! Happy New Year Lori!

Laurie said...

What a fun party Lori.. and those pancetta wrapped mushrooms look so SO good!
What a wonderful idea to donate the gifts later..and we are a two easy bake oven family.. cute idea!

melissa said...

What a fun way to be generous! Kudos to you and your friends.

The sage, ah the sage. I've so been enjoying it this season. What a great appetizer in every way.

Karen said...

What a great idea for the toys... fun and generous!