Once the leaves start changing I’m jonesing for earthy, comforting flavors. Luckily, the farmer’s markets are spilling over with all manner of funny shaped, tantalizing mushrooms. The biggest crime in the world is throwing them into a stew, where they’ll get hopelessly lost.
My favorite way to enjoy fresh mushrooms, like chanterelle, porcini or trumpet, is super simple: sauteed in olive oil with lots of garlic, a little salt and pepper, fresh thyme and a splash of white wine. Finish it off with a squeeze of lemon juice. I like to serve them with a farmer’s market plate; some roasted squash, grilled peppers and some mashed root veggies. You don’t need to employ the entire spice rack when you’re cooking with farm fresh ingredients, it’s much more important to learn the simple cooking methods that coax the most flavor out of them. I’m going to cover a few of those methods through out the month. Won’t you join me?
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 pound chantrelles, stems sliced 1/4 inch thick, tops 1/2 inch thick (you can use any fancy shmancy mushroom here)
big pinch salt
several dashes fresh black pepper
1/3 cup dry white wine
1 tablespoon fresh chopped thyme
1/2 a lemon
Preheat a large, heavy bottomed pan over medium heat (cast iron is awesome.) Saute the garlic in the olive oil for about a minute. Add mushrooms, salt and pepper and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. The moisture should release from the mushrooms and they should be tender but still firm.
Add white wine and turn the heat up. Cook for about 3 more minutes, stirring often. Add the thyme and squeeze the lemon juice in. Taste for salt and serve warm.