Seasons by the Sea: Recipes 01:02:14

The Truth About Vermouth

Sauteed Mushrooms in Phyllo Cups
    I just made this recipe up. It is delicious. Measurements are a guess.

    Serves six as an appetizer.

1 lb. mixed mushrooms, stemmed and chopped (I used 3/4 button, 1/4 shiitake)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 shallot, minced
1/2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped
4 Tbsp. heavy cream or Greek yogurt
3 Tbsp. dry vermouth
Salt and pepper to taste
12 mini phyllo dough cups, prebaked halfway

    In medium-size skillet saute shallots in olive oil until soft. Add mushrooms and thyme and saute over medium heat until they give up their liquid. Add vermouth and saute a few more minutes. Add salt and pepper and taste for seasoning. Add cream or yogurt and stir briefly.

    Place a heaping spoonful into each phyllo cup and bake according to phyllo package directions.

Dan Rizzie’s Negroni
    Negronis are a delicious cocktail but some people just don’t like gin. This version is the creation of my friend, the artist Dan Rizzie. Vinnie whips it up for him at the American Hotel in Sag Harbor.

    Serves one.

    1 oz. Absolut Citron vodka
    1 oz. sweet vermouth
    1 oz. Campari

    Shake it, stir it, serve straight up or on the rocks. Garnish as desired, with lemon or orange peel.

Braised Fennel With Vermouth and Parmesan Cheese
    I found this recipe in an old, old French cookbook. No serving amount was given. I’m guessing it would serve six.

11/2 lbs. fennel bulbs, trimmed and halved
2 oz. butter
Salt and pepper
3 Tbsp. dry vermouth
Splash of pastis, if you desire more anise flavor
2 oz. Parmesan cheese

    Preheat oven to 350.

    Melt butter in Dutch oven casserole, place fennel in casserole, cut side down. Place on stove over medium heat. Add vermouth and pastis, bring to brief boil. Cover loosely with foil and put lid on top. Place in oven and bake for 30 minutes.

    Remove from oven, turn fennel over, return to oven and bake another 30 minutes or until tender when pierced with knife.

    Transfer fennel to shallower oven-proof casserole. Turn oven on to broil setting. Sprinkle with half of the Parmesan cheese, broil until golden. Top with rest of Parmesan when it comes out of the oven.