Monday, January 17, 2011

Sauteed Mushrooms on Toast

Mushrooms for breakfast?
Yes, sometimes (on English Muffins, of course).
Or as part of a light lunch.
Or dinner.
Or used as an appetizer...

This particular recipe comes from a day when we were trying to figure out what to have for lunch.
It was a let's-see-what-we-can-do-here-with-what-we've-got kind of day.
It was also a Natalie-you'd-better-take-notes-on-what-you-do-and-you'd-better-not-misplace-them kind of a lunch.

Needless to say, the notes were misplaced.
They were re-written from what I could remember and then again re-written when I made the mushrooms another day...

The original recipe came from bill's food, a book a picked up in Australia by Bill Granger. 
You know you have those days when you sort of remember a recipe, but not completely and don't have access to it? It's a bit like the game Telephone where things change little by little with each successive turn. Then you have to go back to the original to check out what's changed (though I'll admit I don't think this is TOO far off it).

The preserved lemon peel was from the stash I made a while back. If you can't get your hands on some, you could potentially use the zest of a lemon and a tablespoon or two of fresh squeezed lemon juice. It won't taste the same as with the preserved lemon, but I'm not going to tell you it'll be bad, either!
The other thing you'd need in addition is some salt to taste... maybe start with 1/2 teaspoon and go up from there. With the preserved lemon, no additional salt is necessary since the lemon is plenty salty having been preserved in salt.

If using the preserved lemon, you'll want to remove the pulpy inside of the lemon and rinse the peel under cool, running water to rid it of excess salt before mincing the whole peel to use in this recipe.

I like to have little bits of lemon peel in my mushrooms (as opposed to completely mashed lemon peel that would melt into the mushrooms) because the lemon pieces add some color as well as an occasional zingy burst of flavor!

Sauteed Mushrooms on Toast

16 oz (1 lb.) mushrooms, sliced thickly
2 T butter
2 T olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced or pressed through a garlic press
1/2 c white wine
1 1/2 t dried thyme
3/4 preserved lemon peel, minced
1/2 t fresh ground black pepper

Ricotta cheese
Crusty bread (slightly toasted is recommended)
Italian parsley for garnish, if desired

In a medium pot, heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat. When the butter is melted, add the garlic and mushrooms and toss to coat. Cover the pot and braise the mushrooms about 8 minutes until the mushrooms are softened and the juices are released. Uncover the pot, continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until the juices are absorbed/evaporated (about 5 minutes).
Once the juices are absorbed, add the dried thyme and white wine. Continue to cook and stir occasionally, until the white wine is mostly absorbed/evaporated and the mushrooms are left in a little bit of a slightly syrupy sauce, about 5 minutes.
Stir in the minced preserved lemon peel and black pepper and warm through.
Spread a layer of ricotta cheese on the bread (or toast) and top with the mushroom mixture.


  1. Lemon and thyme on mushrooms - this would be fabulous with a glass of champagne for a State reception or an elegant lunch at home! There are gourmands who would travel miles for a perfectly prepared mushroom delicacy like this. Thanks for making elegance seem so accessible. Natalie, you could publish a book on your lemon recipes alone!



  3. OOOOOOOhhhh!
    Love lemon, love mushrooms,
    together? Yum!