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Creamed Mushrooms for Wigilia: Polish Christmas Eve Meal

Daughter of first-generation Poles, I grew up in Ohio learning to cook and celebrate religious traditions. I've visited Poland three times.

Creamed mushrooms for Wigilia, the traditional Polish Christmas eve meal

Creamed mushrooms for Wigilia, the traditional Polish Christmas eve meal

What Is Wigilia?

Wigilia is the traditional Polish Christmas Eve supper. According to tradition, it is a meatless meal that typically features an odd number of courses (usually seven, nine, or 11). In addition, it is traditional to set an extra place to symbolize the welcoming of the unexpected guest.

My Family's Holiday Traditions

At my family's Wigilia table, we always enjoyed creamed mushrooms. My mother grew up with this dish, as well.

Although it is a traditional Wigilia food, it can also be made and enjoyed year-round. I often serve it with any kind of meat or fish, or with baked pierogi. I've always loved smothering everything on my plate with these delicious mushrooms.

Two Versions

I'm going to show you two ways to make this dish: one is more complex and calorie-laden; the other is simpler and does not have as many calories. Some people say the simple recipe has a sharper taste, but I enjoy both types equally.

Chopped mushrooms and onions

Chopped mushrooms and onions

Cook Time

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: one 1/4 hours

Serves: 4 to 6 servings (approximately 1 1/2 cups sauce)

Read More From Delishably

1. Traditional Creamed Mushrooms Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 pound white, brown or Portobello mushrooms (or a combination of the three)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 3 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 cup medium sweet cream
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Gather ingredients and cookware beforehand because this recipe is combined rather quickly.
  2. Chop or slice mushrooms depending upon preference
  3. In a deep saucepan filled with boiling water, add mushrooms and cover to blanche, but not to cook. Turn off heat. (Sometimes I omit the boiling water steps and saute the mushrooms directly with the onions.)
  4. In a saucepan or deep skillet, saute the onions in butter.
  5. Strain mushrooms and add them to the sauted onions. Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Cook onion-mushroom mixture for about 30 minutes or until vegetables are starting to turn golden brown around the edges.
  7. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, blend flour with cream.
  8. Add small amounts of onion-mushroom mixture to flour-cream mixture and gently mix. This will heat the cream mixture slowly and avoid curdling.
  9. Add warm cream mixture to the rest of the mushroom-onion mixture.
  10. Simmer for about 10 more minutes or until flour cooks and sauce thickens.

2. Shortcut Creamed Mushrooms Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 pound white, brown or Portobello mushrooms (or a combination of the three)
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 3 tablespoons butter or margarine
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 can creamed mushroom sweet, either regular or low-fat version,
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup whole milk

Instructions

  1. In a heavy and deep saucepan, saute the mushrooms directly with the onions in the butter or margarine.
  2. In a medium-sized mixing bowl, combine the flour, cream of mushroom soup and milk.
  3. Add small amounts of onion-mushroom mixture to flour-cream mixture and gently mix. This will heat the cream mixture slowly and avoid curdling.
  4. Add warm cream mixture to the rest of the mushroom-onion mixture.
  5. Simmer for about 10 more minutes or until flour cooks and sauce thickens.
  6. If sauce becomes thicker than you'd like it, slowly add more milk, tablespoon by tablespoon. Stir after each addition so you don't make the sauce too thin.
Open window at Chopin's birthplace in Zelazowa Wola, Poland

Open window at Chopin's birthplace in Zelazowa Wola, Poland

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