I thought cooking was a pain and didn't take much pride in it before being asked to take part in the Taste Of Home Cooking School last month but it inspired me to get behind the stove more often so I decided to take what I'd learned on stage and apply it by actually cooking something for Thanksgiving this year. How about Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms? Mmmm!


Keith James / TSM

Here's what you'll need to make up this delicious appetizer:

  • (1) 19oz package of Italian sausage
  • (30-40) fresh medium-sized mushrooms
  • (1/2 cup) bread crumbs
  • (1) 8ox package cream cheese
  • (3 cloves) minced garlic
  • (1 tbs) lemon juice
  • (2 tbs) freshly minced parsley
  • (2 tbs) extra light tasting olive oil
  • (1/4 cup) grated Parmesan cheese
  • extra virgin olive oil

Here's how to get your cooking on and don't fret, this takes about a half hour to prep and a measly 15 min to cook!

First preheat your oven to 400 degrees and then begin pulling all of the stems off the mushrooms. Place as many as will fit into a cookie sheet covered in foil, feel free to crowd them in as spacing isn't a huge issue here. Next, remove the casings from the sausage if you couldn't find a package already ground up. Then cook the sausage in a skillet in extra light olive oil over medium heat until all pink is gone. don't forget to drain once cooked. Mix in the bread crumbs and then set aside, time to make the stuffing mixture!

Grab a glass mixing bowl and put the package of cream cheese in it and heat in a microwave for 12 seconds to soften it up some. Chop up 2 tbs worth of fresh parsley until fine and mix it into the cream cheese along with the lemon juice and minced garlic. Then add your sausage/bread crumb mixture and your mushrooms are officially ready for stuffing! Put a generous amount in each mushroom cap mounding over the top until almost overflowing. Sprinkle the Parmesan cheese over the tops and then toss in the oven for 14-16 minutes until the mushrooms are lightly browned. Pull em out and then drizzle on the extra virgin olive oil as a garnish and after they cool, dab each mushroom on a paper towel place on a plate and serve!

It was well received and people were surprised that I could cook and we'll just say that the plate returned to my house empty! I'm still a rookie-chef and huge thanks goes out to the TOH Cooking School but we're off to a good start! I'll keep you posted on my cooking adventures and hopefully my house will remain standing in the process!