Chef Amanda Cohen
Amanda Cohen




Chef Amanda Cohen
Dirt Candy | New York

Portobello Mousse with Cherries and Fennel Compote, Grilled Portobello Mushrooms, and Truffled Crostini
Chef Amanda Cohen of Dirt Candy – New York, NY
Adapted by
September 2009

Yield: 15 Servings


Portobello Mousse:Portobello Mousse with Peach and Fennel Compote, Grilled Portobello Mushrooms, and Truffled Crostini
17 tablespoons butter
1 cup finely chopped white onions
½ cup cream
6 cups chopped portobello mushrooms
1 teaspoon agar agar
1½ teaspoons salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon truffle oil

Cherries and Fennel Compote:
½ cup diced fennel
2 cups unripe pears, peeled, seeded, and cut into ½-inch pieces
1 tablespoon agave nectar
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
½ tablespoon ground fennel
2 tablespoons chopped crystallized ginger
3 tablespoons chopped soaked dried sour cherries

Balsamic Reduction:
1 quart balsamic vinegar

Truffled Toast:
¼ cup olive oil
½ tablespoon truffle oil
½ baguette, thinly sliced

Grilled Portobello Mushrooms:
20 large portobello mushrooms
1 pint olive oil
6 tablespoons salt


For the Portobello Mousse:
Melt 2 tablespoons of the butter in a small sauce pan over medium heat. Add the onions and cook until very soft. Add the cream and remaining 15 tablespoons butter and cook over low heat for 10 minutes. Add the agar agar and bring to a boil.

Put the mushrooms and onion-cream mixture in a blender with the truffle oil. Season with salt and pepper and blend until smooth. Strain through a chinoise and pour into cube molds. Let set for at least 1 hour and unmold.

For the Cherries and Fennel Compote:
Sweat the fennel in a saucepot until it’s soft but not mushy, approximately 10 to 15 minutes. Add the pears and cook until partially soft. Add the agave, cider vinegar, fennel, ginger, and cherries; season with salt. Cook for an additional 10 minutes, or until everything is soft.

For the Balsamic Reduction:
Cook the balsamic vinegar over low heat until it’s reduced to ½ cup.

For the Truffled Toast:
Mix the olive oil and truffle oil and brush on each slice of baguette. Grill each piece of baguette until grill marks show and the bread is crisp.

For the Grilled Portobello Mushrooms:
Set a meat slicer to .5 and slice the portobello mushrooms, working from the smooth top to the gills. Do not slice the gills. Toss the mushrooms with the oil and salt. Sear on a very hot grill until the mushrooms have softened.

To Assemble and Serve:
Drizzle the balsamic reduction on a large plate. Place 1 cube of portobello mousse in a corner of the plate. Working clockwise, place the grilled mushrooms, the compote, and a few pieces of truffled toast in the remaining three corners.


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   Published: September 2009