Beet, Wild Mushroom and Potato Casserole
- 2 T vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 1 t caraway seeds
- 2 T all-purpose flour
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/3 cup dry white wine (OR: omit water and wine, substitute vegetable stock)
- 1 1/2 pounds cooked beets, peeled and cut into large bite-sized pieces
- 5 T light cream
- 2 T creamed horseradish (or to taste: I sometimes prefer a little more)
- 1 t hot mustard
- 1 T wine vinegar
- 2 T butter
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 8 oz. assorted wild mushrooms (or, to simplify, baby ‘bellas work well: though it’s best if there are some oyster mushrooms in it!)
- 3 T fresh parsely, chopped
- 2 t each: fresh basil, marjoram, dill and oregano, chopped
- Salt and pepper, to taste
For the potato border:
- 2 lbs. potatoes, preferably Yukon Gold or red potatoes, chopped into largish bite-sized chunks (leave peels on)
- 1/2 c milk
- 1/4 c butter
- 1 T fresh dill, chopped salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
OVEN TEMP: 375 degrees F
1. Lightly oil a 9 inch round baking dish, or similarly-sized casserole dish. Heat the oil in a large saucepan: add the onion and cook until soft. Add caraway seeds and saute a few more minutes, until fragrant. Stir in the flour, remove from heat, and gradually add the water and wine (or stock), stirring until well-blended. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
2. Return to the heat: stir and simmer to thicken, then add the beets, cream, creamed horseradish, mustard and vinegar. Stir to mix.
3. Bring the potatoes to a boil in salted water and cook for 20 minutes. Drain well and mash wth the milk and butter. Add the dill and season with salt and pepper.
4. Spoon the potatoes into the prepared dish and make a well in the center. Spoon the beet mixture into the well and set aside.
5.Melt the 2 T butter in a large nonstick frying pan and cook the shallot until soft, without browning. Add the mushrooms and cook over medium heat until their juices begin to run. Increase the heat and boil off the moisture. When quite dry, season with the herbs and salt and pepper to taste.
6. Spread the mushrooms over the beet mixture, cover the dish with a lid or a piece of aluminum foil, and bake for about 30 minutes. Serve immediately, garnished with parsley if you desire.
This entire dish can be prepared in advance and baked when needed. Allow more baking time (approx. 15-20 minutes more) when baking from room temperature.