Thursday, June 3, 2010

Pan fried mushrooms with toasted bread and parsley

Serves 4

Lunch at the Embassy today was a take on this recipe, with the addition of some sweet little sauteed goujons of John Dory, all tossed through a bowl of just picked garden leaves, including the very first tender courgette flowers of the season. These additions to the dish just seemed to make it all the more complete. The mushrooms as they are stand up well enough for something lighter should the fish and the salad leaves be a chore too far. The weight of mushrooms you need here will depend on the variety you choose. The softer, tenderer mushrooms such as chanterelles and oysters will need less cooking time than firm cultivated fungi. We seem to be blessed here in DC to have a handful of farmers marketers who seem to show up with just enough mushroom varieties to keep it interesting. Apologies for the picture, this was basically what didn't make it onto the plates, I need to eat too you know.

400g mushrooms
80g butter
2 medium sized cloves garlic
a handful of parsley
a lemon
a small ciabatta loaf

Sort the mushrooms into those that are thick fleshed (such as field or chestnut varieties) and into more fragile types such as chanterelles and oyster mushrooms.

Cut the sturdier varieties into large bite-size pieces. Leave the more fragile ones whole. Carefully remove any growing medium, but don't wash them.

Melt 50g of the butter in a shallow pan together with the peeled and crushed garlic. As soon as the garlic is soft and fragrant, add the prepared mushrooms, (firm ones first, tender ones later).

Let them soften and colour for a few minutes then add the parsley and a generous squeeze of lemon juice.

Meanwhile, in a second pan, melt the remaining butter, tear the bread into bite-sized pieces, and fry till golden. Toss with the mushrooms and serve.