Grits Toast with Creamy Mushrooms

3 (14-oz cans) chicken broth (or 32 ounce package plus 1 and 1/4 cups water)
1 and 1/3 cups quick-cooking yellow grits
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus 1 cup for topping
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons melted butter for brushing grits toast
3/4 cup mayonnaise (or to taste)
16 oz pkg of fresh mushrooms, chopped and sautéed in butter ( or use canned) 
1 large can of French-fried onion rings (about 2 cups crushed)
Black pepper to taste
Bring broth to a boil in a large saucepan.  Slowly stir in grits and salt and return to a boil, stirring constantly (or grits will lump).  Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes, or until grits are thickened, stirring occasionally.  Stir in ½ cup cheese and salt.  Remove from heat.  Spoon grits into greased 9 x 13 pan lined with parchment paper (have paper go up sides of pan so that you can lift out grits).  Cover and chill for at least 2 hours or until firm. 
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Lift out grits onto a large cutting board.  Cut out   rounds using a 2-inch biscuit cutter (this will make about 30).  Line a jellyroll pan with parchment paper and brush with melted butter. Place grits rounds on pan and brush tops with butter.  Bake for 15 minutes. Turn grits, and bake 15 minutes more.  Up to this point, the recipe can be prepared days ahead.  If preparing ahead, cover and refrigerate grits rounds until you are ready to top with mushroom mixture.  Bring to room temp before baking. 
For topping, stir together the mayo, 1 cup Parmesan, drained mushrooms, and onion rings.  Top each grits round with mushroom mixture.  Bake at 400 degrees for about 10 minutes or until topping is heated through and begins to brown.
Note:  This makes a great little appetizer (mostly make ahead).  The grits cakes would also be a great base for a black-eyed-pea or other salsa.  

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