Thursday, March 26, 2009

Mushrooms a la Grecque

Inspired by Jennifer Hess' mushroom ragu, I bought a mess of mushrooms at the Green Pea on Atlantic. They keep changing their name. I hope they are the Green Pea. I shop there. Day in, day out.

I came home with button mushrooms, mini portobellos and giant oyster mushrooms, all stem and no cap. Reminds me of some humans. The shitakes looked a little the worse for wear, or I would have added some of those, too.

What defines a la Grecque? For me, lemon juice, olive oil, fennel and coriander. Without those it would not taste right. I start with about a cup of water in large pan, to which I add a celery stalk, fennel fronds, about 20 peppercorns, ditto coriander seeds (or powdered, about a teaspoon), 2 bayleaves, some parsley stalks, a sprig of thyme, salt, some sugar (that is important), about a cup of white wine. Bring to a boil, then add enough cleaned mushrooms to feed yourself or some friends (usually I use just button mushrooms).

At first it will be a tight fit, but as they cook they lose a lot of liquid. Cook until juice starts to appear in their own caps, and then flip them, all the while simmering. When they have cooked and the sauce is about halved, add a generous amount of olive oil while the liquid is bubbling - this will cause it to emulsify. A generous amount is about a 1/4 cup. Cook off a little more. Taste. The result should be salty/sweet/sour in delicious proportions.

Eat on their own with a spoon for the sauce or with buttered toast or hot baguette. You can also eat them cold for a lunch/dinner appetizer. They improve overnight.


  1. Mushrooms! You're a real Hobbit! And you can also talk to animals... :-)

  2. They keep talking to me, at any rate. It would be rude to look the other way.

    Are you saying that I have hairy feet :-)?

    I am too tall to be a hobbit.

  3. True, you're more like Arwen, then... :-)

  4. Mmmmm between your post and Jen's, methinks i'm going to have to buy some mushrooms soon! (although this weekend is dedicated to Indian cooking)


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