What's cooking? Pete Marczyk makes magic with mushrooms

Pete Marczyk and Barbara Macfarlane do not leave their work behind when they leave Marczyk Fine Foods and head for their great old Denver house with the big, new kitchen. They usually bring a selection of some of their market's choicest ingredients home with them, and cook up a feast fit for kings ... or at least, patrons of Marczyk.

Every week, Pete and Barbara serve up recipes on the Cafe Society blog. This week, they're making magic with mushrooms.

Rustic Mushroom Duxelles Stuffed Flank Steak

Most duxelles form a smooth paste, but this has some nice chunky texture, says Pete. The recipe includes both fresh and dried mushrooms, but it's not difficult to prepare, and you've only got to haul out three pans. Just keep in mind, warns Pete, that you should "never taste mushrooms when they're wild and raw because they taste like smoky dirt and you'll be put off." Plus, he says, "experienced 'shroomers rarely, if ever, eat a wild mushroom raw." They're also difficult to dry, so instead of washing them, just gently brush them off.


½ cup white wine ½ cup water ¼ oz. dried porcini mushrooms (other dry mushrooms may be substituted) 1 bay leaf 3 tbsp butter 1 lb fresh crimini, shitake, or wild foraged mushrooms, diced 1 shallot, peeled and diced 1 1/2 lbs butterflied flank steak, room temperature 2 handfuls fresh spinach ¼ cup marsala wine Salt and pepper to taste Butcher's twine

In a saucepan over medium heat, add the porcini mushrooms, white wine, water and bay leaf and simmer for 15 minutes.

Heat two tablespoons butter in a large saucepan over medium heat, add shallots and let them sweat for 10 minutes. Add fresh mushrooms. Simmer for five minutes. Set aside.

Add a dash of salt to the porcini mushrooms and drain the liquid into the large saucepan. Chop the porcinis and add those to the fresh mushroom and shallot mixture. Cook 10 minutes covered over medium heat, being careful to check that the mushrooms don't dry out. Scatter the fresh spinach leaves evenly over the mushroom mixture until the leaves just begins to steam, and then remove the spinach and set it aside. Continue to saute mushrooms for an additional five minutes.

While the mushrooms are cooking, liberally salt and pepper the butterflied flank steak and set aside.

Add ¼ cup marsala wine to the mushroom pan and stir gently. Cook the mixture until it's nearly dry and most of the liquid is absorbed. Spread the mushroom mixture evenly over the flank steak. Gently roll up the steak into a long cylinder (like a jellyroll). (Some of the mushrooms will ooze out, which is fine.) Every two inches, tie the steak with butcher's twine to hold it together.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Melt remaining one tablespoon of butter in a hot pan, and place the steak inside. Sear the steak until it's brown on both sides, 5 to 7 minutes. Place steaks in the oven and cook for 15 to 20 minutes. Let the steak rest for 10 minutes, remove butcher's twine and slice. Pair it with Chateau Mantus Madiran, a rustic red from Bordeaux.

For more from Pete, Barbara and Marczyk Fine Foods, visit the market website here.

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Lori Midson
Contact: Lori Midson