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I want to make escargots in ramekins. Any suggestions?

My elderly MIL used to make escargots when she entertained. I was thinking about making them for her but she's no longer able to handle the implements due to a recent minor stroke. I was thinking I could put *some* in ramekins and she would enjoy eating without the frustration. I've only done them in the shells and don't want to spend the money buying the porcelain baking dishes. Does anyone have any suggestions for how to do this? Thanks in advance.

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  1. Not sure what's going on here, but I *DID* answer this earlier tonight but it hasn't shown up yet sooooo....

    If you're interested, I'll be glad to loan you my white porcelain egg cups. For whatever reason, I think they would work better than the larger ramekins. But with ramekins, you can probably get the same result with four or five snails in each.

    I do like escargot cooked in mushrooms. I use button mushrooms that have not opened. In other words, the gills are still tightly under wraps. Then I snap out the stem and use it just like a shell. The mushroom does drink up the butter, so I use extra. If you have the usual snail pans with the hollows to hold the shells, they work great with the mushrooms. Sometimes I add a sprikling of Panko before popping them into the oven.

    I do love escargot and used to raise my own. Alas, no helix snails in my Texas garden... <sigh>

    3 Replies
    1. re: Caroline1

      You're so smart! I hadn't thought about putting the snails in mushrooms and then putting that into the metal pans. That might work quite well. When you use egg cups, do you put in more than one snail? That sounds interesting. I'll email you tomorrow. Been sick all week. x,c

        1. re: c oliver

          +1 on the mushroom approach.

          A long time ago I cooked in a restaurant that served escargot in mushroom caps. As I recall, we de-stemmed the mushrooms, finely minced the stems and cooked them with way too much garlic butter, then stuffed the caps with the minced stems, topped them with a big snail, put a dab of chive cream cheese over that, dusted with parmesan, and ran 'em under the broiler.

          For an teenager in Oklahoma, it made snails much more approachable. Now I thoroughly enjoy traditional escargot, but I have to admit - I still like the mushroom version better.

      1. We made escargot in puff pastry the other night in culinary school. We made sort of a ravioli out of the puff pastry and added herbed cream cheese and one snail per puff, then baked. We made the pastry from scratch, but it's available in the freezer section, too :-)

        7 Replies
        1. re: dawnviola

          Sounds great but I gotta tell ya I'm pretty addicted to the garlic and butter :)

          1. re: c oliver

            escargot are simply vehicles for delivering garlic and butter, lol. however, i've had them with that sauce and then baked in a ramekin with a puff pastry topping. that adds texture, color and yeah, more butter.

            1. re: hotoynoodle

              Now that's a thought. I've had tomato soup with a puff pastry top and it was fabulous.

          2. re: dawnviola

            i wonder if you could freeze garlic, butter, parsley in a little lump, then add with the escargot to the pastry, and wrap up like a pouch which will -- after baking -- burst (like chicken kiev) when you pop it into your mouth.

            1. re: alkapal

              You description made me go "oh yum." I wonder, however, wouldn't the butter once melted soak through the "pouches"?

              I'm leaning toward a puff pastry top on the ramekins. Thinking I should fill them ahead of time and refrigerate, then add the puff pastry before cooking. Yes?

              1. re: c oliver

                sounds good -- i'd go ahead and prep in advance.

                and you're probably right about a butter soak-through. ;-(. with chicken kiev, you've got the big old chicken piece to hold "in" the butter. here...there's really nothing to slow the butter down.

                btw, go "snail crazy" over on this site: http://www.hertzmann.com/articles/200...

              2. re: alkapal

                Absolutely - puff pastry with parcooked ingredients freezes beautifully, and cooks well from frozen. I've done it a thousand times.

            2. I have several mini muffin tins that are pretty tiny, would those work?

              5 Replies
              1. re: chef chicklet

                My first reaction was YES! But then how would I serve it? I assume you're talking about a muffin tin that make multiple muffins.

                1. re: c oliver

                  With toast points, that's the way I've eaten it. The escargot comes served in the shell in the little round pans, with garlic butter all over of course, the toast points are served seperately. We pick the escargot out, plop it on the toast. sop all the butter when no ones looking. The pans and shells are a pain anyway.
                  or like this.

                  http://www.flickr.com/photos/marylise...
                  http://www.flickr.com/photos/wwny/358...

                2. re: chef chicklet

                  the dish i have had, the puff pastry is only a "lid". no way to successfully plate mini-muffin versions of this. with the amount of butter i like with escargot, i can't imagine a "bottom" bit of pastry not succumbing to mad sogginess.

                  1. re: hotoynoodle

                    I'm with you on this. I'm still trying to figure this out Let's say I have a ramekin that will hold 4 oz. I can put a few snails in each one but still struggle with the "snail butter" part. Should I put a pieceof bread on the bottom to simply take up room and "suck up" butter? :) Thanks for continuing to walk me through this.

                    1. re: c oliver

                      the pastry is a lid. put the snails and the garlic butter in the ramekin. cover with puff pastry that you trim to fit snugly, so it will bake into a pretty, poofy, golden cap. place the ramekin on a small plate to serve (only because said ramekin will be crazy hot from oven.)

                      when diners "cut" into the pastry with a fork, some pastry will naturally cave in. so that will be your "bread".

                3. Around the holidays, Trader Joes has these amazing hors d'oeuvres - escargots in mini brioches. You could maybe do the same, if you had the time. I'm not sure of all the logistics, whether you'd have to cook the escargots before putting them into the hollowed-out brioche (having never cooked escargots myself before) with the garlic butter and then reheating so the butter melts.. either way, it's a darling presentation.

                  1. C oliver, I LOVE escargot especially in those fun little cast iron serving pans, but they would be great in ramekins/custard cups.
                    May I ask what recipe are you using? Are you using fresh escargot?