Total time: 1 hour and 20 minutes, plus cooling time for the mushrooms
Servings: 7 to 8
Note: Adapted from Shaun Murphy's "Derailment Special." Served on the private rail car the Scottish Thistle.
1 1/2 cups sliced brown mushrooms, such as cremini (larger portabello mushrooms can be used, with gills removed and mushrooms diced)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound frozen spinach, thawed and squeezed of excess moisture
1 cup diced cooked chicken
1/4 pound cream cheese
3/4 cup shredded cheese (a mixture including Jack, cheddar, mozzarella and/or provolone works well, but be careful not to use Swiss)
Freshly ground pepper
1 egg, whisked (optional)
10 large phyllo sheets (about 14-by-18-inches)
1. Heat the oven to 375 degrees.
2. Heat a saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the olive oil, then the mushrooms and a pinch of salt and saute until the mushrooms are softened, 5 to 7 minutes. Stir in the garlic, reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook, stirring constantly, until the garlic is aromatic, 1 to 2 minutes more. Remove from heat and place the mushrooms in a medium bowl to cool.
3. When the mushrooms are cool, stir in the spinach and chicken. Add the cream cheese, gently tossing in almond-sized pieces, then gently stir in the shredded cheese and season to taste with salt and pepper. If desired, stir in the egg to use as a binder.
4. Layer 5 sheets of phyllo one directly on top of another, lightly brushing each with olive oil. Place half of the chicken filling in a log shape along the short end of the phyllo rectangle. Roll the filling in the phyllo, similar to a burrito, tucking in the edges as you go to prevent the filling from spilling out. Brush the top of the strudel lightly with olive oil and place on a parchment-lined baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining 5 sheets of phyllo and filling.