These are really something different – crispy on the outside and dense and creamy within, the mushrooms bringing their savory touch with the sweet citrus notes of marjoram and nutty fried garlic.
Serve these as an appetizer at any special occasion – they would be great served on a dressed salad of arugula, or as is: plated solo with a drizzle of olive oil. Also very important for special occasions: they come together quite quickly and can be made up to two days ahead.
This would also be great as a brunch dish, or even the main dish for dinner, served with a salad, crusty buttered bread and maybe a light tomato sauce.
- 320g (2 2/3 cup) almond flour (almond meal)
- 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon sea salt
- 1/2 to 2/3 cup water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons nondairy butter
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1 1/2 cup button mushrooms, sliced
- 1 large garlic clove, crushed and chopped
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh marjoram or oregano, plus 5-6 sprigs OR 1/3 teaspoon dried marjoram or dried oregano
- a pinch of ground nutmeg
- 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
- a pinch of sea salt
- rice flour or cornstarch to flour molds (optional)
- extra virgin olive oil
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Generously grease 6 molds (ramekins or muffin pan). If the mold is flat, line the bottom with a piece of parchment. Otherwise, lightly flour with rice flour or cornstarch.
- Make the almond cheese: Mix together the almond flour, lemon juice and sea salt and mix to combine. Add 1/2 cup water and mix vigorously for a few minutes or blend in a blender for about twenty seconds. Add another few tablespoons of water if necessary and again mix well.
- In a frying pan or skillet over high heat, combine 1 teaspoon olive oil and the butter. When the butter melts, add the mushrooms and garlic and cook until just golden (just a few minutes). Remove from heat and stir in chopped marjoram or oregano, nutmeg, black pepper, and salt.
- Gently fold together the almond cheese and mushroom mixture. Put the top of a marjoram or oregano sprig in the bottom of each mold and then scoop in a generous 1/3 cup of the mixture in and lightly pack it down.
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the timbales are lightly browned. Remove from the oven and let cool for five minutes. Carefully loosen by running a spoon or knife around the edge and then unmold. If desired, place on a baking sheet and bake for another 3-5 minutes to further brown the tops.
- Serve hot, warm, or cold, drizzled with extra virgin olive oil.