From the kitchen of Nealey Dozier, dixiecaviar.com, Atlanta, Georgia
"This bruschetta is great for holiday gatherings. It's hearty enough to satisfy but not decadent enough to distract from the main event."
4 (1/2-inch-thick) sourdough bread slices
2 tablespoons butter
1 large shallot, minced
1 (8-oz.) package sliced fresh mushrooms
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons sherry
1/2 cup vegetable broth
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
Table salt and black pepper to taste
2 cups baby arugula
2 teaspoons olive oil
4 (1-oz.) goat cheese slices
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 350°. Bake sourdough bread slices on a wire rack on a baking sheet 12 to 14 minutes or until toasted. Meanwhile, melt butter in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add minced shallot, and cook, stirring often, 4 to 5 minutes or until softened. Add mushrooms, and cook 8 to 10 minutes or until golden brown and tender. Stir in flour, and cook, stirring constantly, 2 minutes or until blended. Add sherry, and cook, stirring constantly, 1 to 2 minutes or until liquid evaporates. Add vegetable broth, and simmer 3 to 4 minutes or until sauce thickens. Stir in parsley and lemon juice. Add table salt and black pepper to taste. Remove from heat, and let stand 5 minutes. Toss arugula with olive oil. Spoon one-fourth of mushroom mixture onto each piece of toast. Top each with 1/2 cup arugula mixture and 1 goat cheese slice. Add desired amount of salt and pepper; serve immediately.
A Note from Nealey: "For an extra layer of flavor, rub toasted bread with a garlic clove and brush with olive oil, or stir a dollop of sour cream into the mushroom mixture after cooking."