Sign up for our Newsletter

Making the effort to track down lion’s mane mushrooms are worth the effort for this savory galette. (Photo credit: Doug Young)

At first glance, the lion’s mane and oyster mushrooms can be at once beautifully intriguing and thoroughly intimidating, especially when encountered on a local winter farmers market table. The former resembles a large white, shaggy clump; the latter has a cap shape that mimics the bivalve of the same name. So odd-looking are they, a home cook might be tempted to pass up cooking with these funky fungi. 

Don’t be intimidated by the odd shapes of lion’s mane or oyster mushrooms — both their health benefits and flavor are abundant. (Photo credit: Doug Young)

But these are not your workaday supermarket mushrooms.

These choice edibles are considered a delicacy, and are gaining in popularity not only for their taste but also for their health benefits.

“Lion’s mane mushrooms are becoming trendy because they’re not only a gourmet edible, but a functional, medicinal mushroom,” says Larry Frazier of South Shore Mushrooms. As science investigates what these compounds can do, lion’s mane mushrooms in particular remain unique.

Oyster mushrooms are best sliced on the bias before cooking to get the most out of their varied texture. (Photo credit: Doug Young)

“They are a type of nootropic,” explains Frazier, who grows mushrooms for wholesale buyers and local farmers’ markets, “meaning they contain compounds that improve brain health and neuro-connections.” Frazier, who resides in Center Moriches, has been fond of growing mushrooms (“Way before it was cool,” he muses) for the last 25 years, starting South Shore Mushrooms three years ago. The mushrooms grow in what Frazier describes as a “controlled environment,” where the lighting, airflow, humidity and temperature are ideal.

“Anywhere you can do that, you can grow mushrooms,” he says. And grow they do, evidenced by the mushrooms he brings to the Greater Westhampton Chamber of Commerce’s Winter Market (St. Mark’s Church Parish Hall, 40 Main St., Westhampton Beach) on Saturdays. In particular, South Shore’s oyster mushrooms stand out and invite questions from market shoppers. “Oyster mushrooms are naturally rich in lovastatin,” he explains to those who ask, “which reduces high cholesterol.”

Healthy bonuses that these unusually shaped fungi offer aside, the question that you really want answered is likely this: How do they taste and how do you cook them?

“Oyster and lion’s mane mushrooms are an excellent addition to this delicious free-form tart,” says Mary Schoenlein (of Mary’s Marvelous) of the recipe she created here. “A mixture of shitake, white button and cremini is also perfect.”

Leeks, thyme, salt and fresh pepper are the final touches for Schoenlein’s savory mushroom masterpiece. (Photo credit: Doug Young)

The mushrooms sing with softened butter and flavorful leeks as the base for the tart. “The leeks are key in this recipe,” explains Schoenlein, suggesting washing them thoroughly, covering them with parchment, and cooking “low and slow, so they get soft.”

And what does the highly-touted baker of the sorely missed Mary’s Marvelous think of South Shore Mushrooms? “I think they’re amazing. The flavor of the oyster mushroom is so beautiful and distinct, unlike supermarket mushrooms.”

Shoenlein’s pro tip: Pull apart and shred the lion’s mane, adding texture to the dish and creating a winning combo with the oyster mushrooms. “Just be sure to cook until they are soft,” she reiterates. Also, you can make the dough by hand if you don’t have a food processor. It can be refrigerated for two days or frozen for three months.

Serve a slice of this lovely mushroom and leek galette for lunch with a winter greens salad and a glass of local Pinot Gris, like the 2022 from Bedell Cellars, a crisp, lovely white (that gets a little extra grippiness and texture from leaving the pressed juice in contact with the grape skins) that works great with this galette. And feel good about it, too!

Mary Schoenlein’s mushroom galette

Prep Time 35 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes


For the pastry dough

  • 1 1/2 cups unbleached white flour
  • 5 tbsp cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 3 tbsp cold vegetable shortening
  • 3 tbsp ice cold water

For the mushroom galette

  • 3 cups leeks, white and light green parts only (about one generous bunch), sliced 1/4-inch thick
  • 1 1/2 – 2 lbs mushrooms, assorted varieties
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 – 5 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 1 egg white (for brushing on the pastry dough)
  • 2 tbsp Parmesan or Pecorino Romano cheese, grated
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • salt and freshly ground pepper


For the pastry dough

  • Put the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor.
  • Add the butter and pulse 3 or 4 times to make a mixture that resembles coarse cornmeal.
  • Add the cold shortening, pulse 3 or 4 times, then drizzle the cold water over the top of the mixture. Pulse the machine until the dough just comes together on the blade. Don’t overblend; you will finish it by hand. There will be specks of butter and shortening visible in the dough, which is good.
  • Turn the dough onto a piece of parchment or plastic wrap, and using the plastic wrap, bring the dough together with your hands to form a disc. Wrap well and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. The dough can be frozen for 3 months.
  • Take the dough from the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter for ½ hour before rolling it. Lightly flour the counter and flour the rolling pin. Working from the center of the disc of dough and turning it while you work, gently roll it into a 12” circle making sure to keep the counter under the dough floured while you roll.
  • Transfer the dough to a 9” x 13” sheet pan and refrigerate until ready.

For the galette

  • Cover the sliced leeks with water in a small bowl and soak for a few minutes. Scoop the leeks out and let them drain in a sieve until most of the water is gone and they are relatively dry. 
  • Using a medium saute pan and on low heat, melt 3 tablespoons of butter. Add the sliced leeks, ½ teaspoon of salt, and a few grinds of black pepper. Cover with a piece of parchment paper that is big enough to tuck under them slightly to form a seal. Keep the heat low and allow the leeks to cook and soften slowly. Check them a few times and stir. Cook for 5 or 6 minutes, remove from the heat and allow to cool.
  • Clean the mushrooms. Remove stems if using shitakes. Slice all the mushrooms into ¼ inch slices. On high heat, add 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil in a medium-sized non-stick sauté pan. Add half of the mushrooms, a bit of salt and pepper, and ½ teaspoon of chopped fresh thyme. Cook for about 4 minutes, stirring often. They will brown nicely. Repeat with the other half of the mushrooms. Remove from the heat.
  • Mix the egg with grated cheese and heavy cream, a pinch of salt, and a few grinds of black pepper.
  • Take the pastry from the refrigerator and spread the cooked leeks over the bottom, leaving 1½ inches free around the edge of the pastry. Lay the cooked mushrooms over the top of the leeks and pour the egg and cream mixture over the leek and mushrooms. Pull up the sides of the pastry onto the filling, crimping the dough to form the galette.
  • Brush the dough with egg white and sprinkle with some salt.
  • Place in the center of the oven and cook for 30 minutes, rotating the pan after 15 minutes.
  • Remove from the oven when the pastry is golden brown.