Q: I have seen this word on menus: duxelles, or sometimes mushroom duxelles. What are these and how are they used?
A. Duxelles (dook-SEHL) is a mixture that is primarily made of finely chopped or processed mushrooms, usually white button mushrooms, flavored with a little onion or shallot, spices or herbs. It is cooked slowly until it makes a dense mixture, almost a paste. This mixture is useful in a number of ways. You can use it as a spread or a filling. Some chefs make Beef Wellington, which is beef tenderloin wrapped in pastry, using duxelles instead of the traditional pâté de foie gras that is usually spread on the beef before it is wrapped. Duxelles can also go into a pasta filling to make a ravioli or dumpling, or put into an omelet.
Click on the link below for a spread, like tapenade, made of wine-flavored duxelles.