Wild and Steamy

DEAR SOS: The wild mushroom cappuccino served at The Ritz at Newport Beach really caught my fancy. The mushroom mixture is served in a large cappuccino cup and filled with steamed milk, just like cappuccino. Can you obtain the recipe?


DEAR SHERRY: We asked and received. The wild mushrooms called for are generally available at most supermarkets. If not, substitute with any others, including everyday mushrooms. Some gourmet stores carry dried, ground mushroom powder. It can be omitted, if not available.


1/2 pound portobello mushrooms

1/2 pound crimini mushrooms

1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms

1/2 pound oyster mushrooms

1/2 cup butter

2 or 3 shallots, minced

1 cup Port

2 cups dry red wine

2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme

1 teaspoon fresh chopped rosemary

1 teaspoon black pepper

3 quarts chicken stock or vegetable broth

1 cup heavy whipping cream or creme fraiche

Sea salt

1/4 cup olive oil


2 cups milk

1 ounce ground morel (mushroom) powder


Clean portobello, crimini, shiitake and oyster mushrooms. Remove stems, chop and reserve. Cut mushroom caps in 1/2-inch dice.

Melt 1/4 cup butter in 6-quart saucepan. Add all but 1 tablespoon shallots. Cook until browned. Add 1/2 of diced mushroom caps and chopped stems. Add Port and red wine, then add thyme, rosemary and black pepper. Cook until wine is reduced to consistency of glaze.

Add chicken stock and whipping cream, reduce by 1 quart over medium-high heat, about 20 minutes. Puree stock and strain through medium strainer, making sure mushroom paste is pushed through sieve. Return stock to saucepan, simmer 15 minutes and skim surface of broth. Season to taste with sea salt.

Heat remaining 1/4 cup butter and olive oil in large saute pan and add remaining shallots. Saute until browned. Add remaining diced mushroom caps and saute 2 minutes over high heat. Season to taste with sea salt.

Place mushrooms in 8 (8- or 9-ounce) cappuccino cups. Fill each cup with broth to 1/2-inch from rim.

Steam milk in cappuccino maker or heat in saucepan, then beat milk with whisk until frothy. top with steamed milk. Sprinkle with morel mushroom powder and paprika.

Makes 8 servings.

Each serving contains about:

479 calories; 1,378 mg sodium; 78 mg cholesterol; 33 grams fat; 11 grams carbohydrates; 12 grams protein; 0.98 gram fiber.

Coconut Cookie Memories

DEAR SOS: I would love to reproduce the wonderful washboard cookies with coconut from my childhood. Do you have such a recipe?


DEAR CHARLENE: Here's our recipe uncovered in a booklet published by General Food Corp.


2 cups flour

3/4 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1/8 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup butter

1 cup brown sugar, packed

1 egg

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 teaspoon almond extract

1 1/3 cups flaked coconut

Mix flour with baking powder, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in mixing bowl.

Cream butter in separate bowl. Gradually add brown sugar, beating until light and fluffy. Add egg and vanilla and almond extracts. Beat well. Add flour mixture, blending well. Stir in coconut.

Divide dough into 2 parts. Spread or pat each half into 10x9-inch rectangle. Chill, if necessary, until dough is easily handled. Cut each rectangle into 4 strips lengthwise. Cut each strip into 10 pieces.

Place about 2 inches apart on ungreased baking sheet. Using a floured fork, gently press ridges into cookies. Bake at 375 degrees until golden brown, about 8 to 10 minutes.

Makes about 6 1/2 dozen.

Each serving contains about:

44 calories; 31 mg sodium; 7 mg cholesterol; 2 grams fat; 6 grams carbohydrates; 0 protein; 0.04 gram fiber.

Only recipes of general interest will be printed. Send recipe request to Culinary SOS, Food Section, The Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles 90053. Include restaurant address when requesting recipes from restaurants. We are unable to answer requests by mail.

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