Janny de Moor Janny de Moor

Limburg mushroom tart (Champignonvlaai)


Baking material:

  • 40×35 cm baking tray
  • greased with butter


Dough for 8 people *:

  • 500 g strong white flour
  • 1 sachet easy-blend/easy-bake dried yeast
  • approximately 250 ml lukewarm water
  • 25 g softened butter
  • 1 beaten egg
  • 3 tsp salt (6 g)



  • 40 g butter
  • 2 chopped onions
  • 2 chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 kg cleaned mushrooms in slices
  • 4 tbsp lemon juice
  • pepper and salt
  • 2 tsp finely cut rosemary
  • 200 g grated young cheese
  • 250 ml crème fraîche
  • chopped parsley
  • 200 g grated aged cheese


Side dish:

  • vegetables eaten by hand

In Limburg, the Vlaai- province of The Netherlands (see: Limburg Tart), a lot of field mushrooms are grown. About 50% of the Dutch production. And nowhere in the world you can be as well trained as a mushroom grower as at the vocational school in Horst. There you will learn how to bring a ‘flight’ (vlucht) of mushrooms to top quality. “Flight” is a poetic term for a week’s harvest. At the right temperature and humidity they fly out of their bed of special compost in a few days. Horst also focuses on compost production, variety breeding and environmental care. Successfully! Dutch people eat more than 3 kilos per person per year, while more than 30 million kilos are exported. A stormy development when you consider that serious mushroom cultivation started there only in 1950. Three hundred years after a melon grower near Paris discovered by chance that edible mushrooms suddenly grew on his finished hotbed manure. The fact that large-scale cultivation got underway so late was mainly due to the difficulty of finding a reliable way of compost preparation.

The mushroom used to be called Kampernoelje in Dutch. That was replaced with the gentler-sounding French word Champignon, which really just means “mushroom”. Especially the field mushroom has thus become the edible mushroom par excellence. Why do the Dutch also speak of a paddestoel (toad stool)? The story goes that the devil regularly roamed the earth in disguise as a thick toad. Whenever he wanted to take a rest, he quickly conjured up a mushroom. Hence, in nature, in addition to edible, there are also poisonous mushrooms. Fortunately, our breeders outsmarted the devil!

  • Dough: mix the flour in a bowl with the yeast. Add water, egg and soft butter. After a little kneading add the salt.
  • Knead firmly for at least 15 minutes until the dough comes off your hands and small bubbles can be seen everywhere (kneading machine 10 minutes at the lowest setting). Cover the dough in a bowl with a damp cloth. Allow to proof into twice the size (1-1½ hours) at room temperature.
  • Meanwhile preheat the oven to 200˚C/400˚F/gas 6.
  • Roll out the dough on a floured work surface into the size of the baking tray. Place on the baking tray, shape neatly by hand.
  • Topping: melt the butter in a large skillet, sauté onion and garlic first. Then add the mushrooms in stages, fry turning. Sprinkle the lemon juice over it. Fire high. Allow the moisture that is now released to evaporate completely with occasional stirring.
  • Mix young cheese, cream and rosemary and add to the mushrooms. Let cool. Spread this filling over the dough, sprinkle everything with parsley and then with old cheese.
  • Bake: about 30 minutes on the bottom shelf of the preheated oven.
  • Warm up: first if needed defrost (in microwave), then put in an oven at 200˚C for 15-20 minutes.


* This is a pie for 8 people, but the pastry can be frozen very well (in pieces). So you can come back to it if you want. Therefore buy those mushrooms if they advertize them cheap! And immediately make a pie because when they are white they have the most flavor. Half of the dough fits into a greased flan tin of 28 cm diameter.


Vegetables eaten by hand  (Groente uit het vuistje).

• Sauce for 2 servings: 3 tbsp. olive oil, 1 tbsp red wine vinegar, 2 tbsp. olive water (from a jar of green olives), 1 clove garlic, 1 tbsp. finely chopped parsley, pepper and salt. Serve with: red lettuce leaves, chicory leaves, celery strips, fennel strips, cucumber strips  and green olives. Place the washed and drained vegetables beautifully onto dishes. Dip a piece of the vegetables in the sauce and eat it by hand.

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