Amateur Mushroom Cook-Off

Rebecka Evans of Pearland, Texas won 1st place with her American Fusion Patty Melt with low country mushroom-bacon gravy in the 2018 Amateur Cook-Off Competition


The Amateur Mushroom Cook-Off is on Saturday, September 7 in the Special Events Tent.
Cooking starts at 10:30 am. Judging begins at 11:30 am.

The 2019 theme is: Pasta with Mushrooms 

Click here to see the finalists for 2019

The theme for 2018 was Mushrooms Blended with Grassfed Beef or Lamb.

Blended mushroom recipes require ground mushrooms to be mixed with a protein. As a trendy meat extender, the mushrooms create a unique, flavorful combination for burgers, meatballs, tacos, stuffing, or even a Bolognese sauce. The 2018 Mushroom Festival Amateur Cook-Off will focus on blending mushrooms with grassfed beef or lamb. At the Cook-off all recipes will be made with the Australian grassfed beef or lamb of our partner True Aussie Beef and Lamb.

The finalists for the 2018 Amateur Mushroom Cook-off are:

  • First Place- Rebecka Evans of Pearland, TX – American Fusion Patty Melt with Low Country Mushroom-Bacon Gravy
  • Second Place- Devon Delaney of Westport, CT – Ginger Snapped Lamb and Mushroom Lettuce Cups with Lemon Mint Yogurt Sauce & Buttered Pistachios
  • Third Place- Janine Washle, of Eastview, KY – Hunter’s Style Beef and Wild Mushrooms over Creamy Parmesan Grits
  • Best Use of Challenge Butter- Jill Gilber of Philadelphia, PA – Exotic Spiced Beef & Silky Buttered Mushrooms over Hummus

Amateur Mushroom Cook-Off Winner Recipe

Rebecka Evans- American Fusion Patty Melt with Low Country Mushroom-Bacon Gravy

Ingredients: 1. 15 ounces’ True Aussie Ground beef
2. 3 ounces True Aussie Ground Lamb
3. 2 ½ pounds Mixed Mushrooms (baby portabella, white button) divided
4. 2 cups Heavy cream
5. 22 slices Bacon, (about 24 ounces) 16 slices cooked whole, 6 cooked and chopped, all bacon fat reserved
6. 4 ½ teaspoons flour
7. 2 sticks Challenge butter, 1 cup
8. Marbled Jewish Rye Bread
9. 16 slices Swiss cheese
10. 2 large Sweet Onions
11. 4 green onions, chopped
12. 1 tablespoon fresh chopped rosemary
Rosemary and sea salt
Fresh cracked black pepper
Directions: Cook 16 strips thin cut bacon till crisp. Drain on paper towel and set aside. Remove bacon drippings to a small bowl.Chop and cook remaining 6 slices of bacon. Leave 1 tablespoon bacon drippings in pan, reserve the drippings to the small bowl. Drain chopped bacon on a paper towel and set aside.

Slice large sweet onions thinly, sauté in 1 tablespoon bacon drippings and 1 tablespoon Challenge Butter until caramelized. About 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Set aside

Chop 4 large green onions (both green and white parts) makes about 2 cups. Set aside

Sliced Mushroom Blend: Slice 1 pound mushrooms thinly. Heat a large sauce pan over medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon bacon drippings and 1-2 tablespoon Challenge Butter, 1 cup of green onions, 2 teaspoons fresh chopped rosemary, and sliced mushrooms. Cook until crisp and caramelized, About 5 minutes) Season with a pinch salt and pepper. Set aside to cool. Chop mushrooms in the Kitchen Aid 3.5 Cup One-Touch 2 speed chopper. Set aside for mushroom gravy.

Chopped Mushroom Blend: Using the Kitchen Aid 3.5 Cup One-Touch 2 speed chopper, chop the remaining mushrooms. Sauté the blended mushrooms in 1 tablespoon bacon drippings and 1 tablespoon Challenge Butter until all the liquid is gone. Season with salt and pepper. Cool.

Blended Burger: In a large bowl combine 15 ounces True Aussie Ground Beef, 3 ounces True Aussie Ground Lamb, 1 cup chopped green onion, 2 cups cooled, chopped mushroom blend (without the rosemary). Season with 1 teaspoon salt and 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper. With your hands or a large spoon, combine the mixture just till blended. Don’t over work the meat.
Divide blended burger mixture equally into 4 balls. Place the balls on a parchment line baking sheet and shape into 4, 1/4-inch rectangle patties. In a large sauté or grill pan, melt 1 tablespoon Challenge Butter and cook burgers for 3-4 minutes per side or until just cooked through. Transfer to a plate. Reserve drippings

Low Country Mushroom Gravy: Add 1 tablespoon bacon drippings, 2 tablespoon Challenge Butter to a large sauce pan. Heat over medium high. Once bacon drippings and butter are melted add 4 ½ teaspoons flour. Cook for 1-2 minutes stirring constantly. Whisk in 2 cups heavy cream. Continue whisking until all the flour is incorporated and there are no lumps. Reduce heat to low. Add 1 tablespoon Challenge Butter, Sliced Mushroom Blend with rosemary, and any reserved burger drippings, and chopped bacon. Stir to combine. Season with 1 teaspoon salt and fresh cracked pepper. Keep warm

Making the Patty Melt: Butter 8 slices Marbled Jewish Rye bread with room temperature Challenge butter. Using a large sauté or grill pan turn heat to medium. Cook two burgers at a time. Place 4 slices bread, butter side down in the pan, add 2 slices Swiss cheese to each piece of bread, lay a cooked burger patty on top of 2 of the pieces of bread. Top both burgers with caramelized onions, 4 slices bacon for each burger, and top with 1-2 tablespoon mushroom gravy. Cover the burger with second slice of bread and cook for 2-3 minutes. Carefully, flip patty melt over and continue cooking until cheese is melted, about 3 more minutes or until heated through. Repeat process for the remaining burgers. Serve with more mushroom gravy for dipping. ENJOY!

Highlights from Previous Years

Get recipe and view scenes from the 2017 Amateur Mushroom Cook-off

View Scenes from 2016 Amateur Mushroom Appetizer Cook-Off