You ought to know that before I go on with my story that this pie is not just for kids. Its delicious, vegetarian and perfect hot or cold served for a picnic. I knew that I had to feature little toadstools in the story. The question was, where on earth would I find some? Should I call all of my friends and ask them "Do you have any toadstools? No? OK bye". But my husband told me no that would mark me as crazy and may come up in a future court appearance. So I fashioned these toadstools and I was on my way.
Although I don't have children and I remain immune to the unsubtle hints thrown my way to have them, I like injecting a child like perspective into this dish. Amy Sedaris came up with the name of course, I just ran with it. So to make this vegetarian dish more appealing to your child or to anyone who has the heart of a child, I have a story for you:
An Echo in the Forest by Not Quite Nigella
Once upon a time, not so long ago, there was a frog called Gerard who lived in the Enchanted Echo Forest. He lived there alone but loved company. And before you ask, he wasn't a pervert or anything, he was just very, very shy around other animals and could never strike up a conversation. Every time he tried his very long tongue got caught up in itself and no one could understand what he was saying "Ribbititigibbit" was all he could come up with.
Every day he walked through the forest to get to work to pay off the mortgage on his cottage. One day on the way home he saw a red and white spotted toadstool. "How wondrous!" he thought and sat on it and day dreamed for a while before heading off home.
The next day there was another toadstool and he sat on both of them and stayed a little longer. Even though he was alone, he felt very much like he wasn't the only frog alone on earth, as if there were friends around him. The next day there was another mushroom and that evening he stayed for a few hours gazing up at the stars.
On the fourth day, he was walking home after having a run in with the boss, a nasty beaver, and what should he come across but an enormous toadstool pie! He almost fell back in astonishment and his mouth was agape with surprise. From the corner he heard a giggle and a buzz. He saw a Bee fly around the corner. "Why hello!" said the bee whose name was Tiddlywink. Gerard smiled broadly back at Tiddlywink and stammered out "Hellohowareyou?" in a rush. He was amazed that he could talk and all he had to do was smile when he spoke.
Tiddlywink said "I made this mushroom pie in the hope that you would stay longer tonight and help us all eat it. Would you care to join us friend?" and out from the forest popped up all of the other forest animals. They had a lovely evening full of dancing and eating with no inappropriate behaviour by anyone.
Gerard smiled, his tongue no longer tied. He was no longer alone.
Tiddlywinks Toadstool Pie from I Like You: Hospitality Under the Influence
- 1 baked piecrust (I used ready made puff pastry for this which was baked in a 20cm flan tin)
3 tablespoons of butter
3 tablespoons of flour
1 cup of light cream
Salt and Pepper
1 lb./500grams fresh mushrooms, sliced (I added 100g cubes of firm tofu to this)
2 tablespoons of butter
2 small garlic cloves, crushed
3 shallots, minced
2 egg yolks mixed with 1 tablespoon of light cream
Salt and Pepper
2 tablespoons of white wine
- 1/2 cup of grated Swiss cheese
Step 1 - Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour and cook until smooth. Add cream and bring to a boil, stirring constantly.
Step 2 - Saute mushrooms in butter with garlic and shallots. Drain off any liquid. Add the mushrooms to the cream sauce and the egg mixture. Add salt, pepper, and wine.
Step 3 - Pour into pie shell (and its best piled high in a smaller dish, it looks better bountiful). Top with cheese. Bake at 350F/180C degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, until cheese is melted and crust is brown.
Story by Not Quite Nigella