Mushrooms prepared this way and served with small pieces of bone marrow are a classic garnish for beef dishes. Times have changed, the garnish has become the main event. Minus the bone marrow, Castiglione mushrooms make a handsome vegetable course or hors d’oeuvre. I presume that a chef to Count Baldasar Castiglione, the fifteenth-century Italian writer, was originally responsible for this dish. Those were the days when the dish bore the name of the person who employed the chef. Self-employed designer chefs have changed all that.
Wipe the mushrooms and cut off the stalks, chop the stalks finely. Place the mushrooms gill side up in a baking dish and prepare the filling.
Cut the aubergine into eight slices, salt and leave to drain in a colander.
Melt the butter in a pan, add
Add the ham and parsley and season with
Rinse the aubergine in cold water; drain and dry on a cloth. Dip each slice in seasoned flour and fry briefly in olive oil. Drain on kitchen paper.
Divide the rice mixture between the mushrooms, making a neat pile on each. Flatten slightly and place a slice of aubergine on top and sprinkle with breadcrumbs.
Bake in the centre of a moderate oven (Mark 5, 190°C, 375°F) for 25–35 minutes.
© 1987 Geraldene Holt. All rights reserved.