1. Place dried morels in a bowl, add the boiling water, push mushrooms beneath liquid and let soak until plumped, about 10 minutes. Remove mushrooms, rinse well, squeeze lightly to remove excess liquid, and slice or coarsely chop them. (The liquid may be strained through cheesecloth and reserved or frozen to use in soups, sauces, etc.)

  2. Heat butter in a large saucepan over medium flame. Add onions and cook, stirring often, until they begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Stir in mushrooms, sprinkle with a little salt and continue to cook, stirring often, until onions are translucent, another 4 to 6 minutes. Reduce heat to low, add flour and cook mixture 4 to 5 minutes, stirring often.

  3. Meanwhile, combine chicken stock and cream in a non-metal bowl; microwave until hot, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir the stock-cream mixture into the vegetables; bring to simmer and cook 8 to 10 minutes, stirring occasionally as mixture thickens. Season with salt and pepper to taste. (If you’ve used packaged chicken stock, the sauce may need no salt at all.)

  4. Combine vegetable mixture with chicken, wild rice, parsley and thyme. Add more salt and pepper, if needed. Butter a large casserole dish and spread mixture into it. At this point the dish can be covered and refrigerated or baked immediately.

  5. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Bake until the mixture is piping hot, 35 to 45 minutes. If you’re using Parmesan, sprinkle it over the dish after the first 20 minutes of baking time.

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A casserole dish of wild rice and mushrooms garnished with thyme sprigs.