Mushroom Filo Triangles
◔ Makes 16 to 20 triangles
⧖ Not gonna lie. This will take some time.
4 tablespoons butter, plus another 4 tablespoons (or more) for brushing
1 pound mushrooms, any kind, sliced
1-2 shallots, chopped
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
½ teaspoon herbal salt, like Seasonello
¼ teaspoon white pepper
½ teaspoon dried chili flakes (optional)
1 tablespoon fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried
¼ cup vermouth
¾ cup grated gruyère or 4 ounces goat cheese or really any other kind of cheese you like
6-8 sheets filo dough
Thaw filo pastry to room temperature.
Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a pan and add shallots and garlic. Sauté until soft and fragrant, 4-5 minutes. Add sliced mushrooms, salt, pepper, chili flaks, and thyme.
When the mushrooms have absorbed all the butter, add vermouth. Continue to cook mushrooms until liquid is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Transfer mixture to a bowl to cool.
While the mushroom mixture cools, set your mise en place, with an open space for folding the triangles, a pizza cutter, a pot of melted butter and a pastry brush, the phyllo sheets covered in both plastic and a wet towel, and a bowl for your filling.
When the mushrooms are cooled to room temperature, pulse the mixture in a food processor until crumbly. Put mixture in a bowl and fold in the cheese.
Melt butter in a pan on the stove and remove from heat. Take out a sheet of filo. Brush pastry with melted butter using a pastry brush.
Cut the buttered sheet into 3 or 4 strips. Filo pastry comes in various sizes, so keep that in mind when you slice it. Each strip should be in the neighborhood of 3-inches wide.
Place a tablespoon of filling at the end of each strip. Fold one corner over the filling to form a triangle. Keep folding until you reach the end. When you've finished a sheet, slice off any remaining pastry and place each triangle on a baking sheet, with the last folded side down so it won't curl up when you cook.
Before cooking, brush the top of each triangle with a little more butter. Bake at 400°F for 15 to 20 minutes, until triangles are browned and crispy.
Oil, usually olive oil, can be substituted for butter.
If you don't have herbal salt, use plain salt, reducing the amount by half, and add a teaspoon of Italian seasoning.
Use as little butter or oil as possible, as too much will make your triangles messy and greasy.
Wrap unused filo pastry in plastic, then in a wet paper towel, and keep in the fridge in a zippered bag or sealed container. Use within a week or so.
White wine can be substituted for the dry vermouth, but this is a nice way to use up vermouth because no one drinks that many martinis. Vermouth should be good in the refrigerator for several months.
If you somehow run out of butter, first ask yourself why you don't always have back-up butter. Then substitute oil to brush the rest of the pastry.