Autumn always delivers on fabulous funghi. The shelves are full of weird and wonderful looking mushrooms and here follows some ideas on how to enjoy them.
How to clean:
Mushrooms must be cleaned thoroughly before cooking, or else they are liable to have a gritty texture. Pick them over, removing any debris from the forest or woods using your fingers, then brush clean. You can buy a special soft mushroom brush if you like, though a pastry brush will do. The preparation may be a bit tedious but it’s well worth the effort.
Herby Chanterelles on toasted sourdough
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 pound fresh chanterelles
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 cup vegetable stock
½ teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary
1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon cold butter
¼ teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper, to taste
4 slices toasted sourdough
4 tablespoons shaved vegetarian Parmesan
Heat your largest fry pan over medium-high heat, and when it is hot, add the olive oil. Once the olive oil is hot, add the chanterelles. Cook for 4 minutes without moving them around too much. Add the sherry vinegar and the lemon juice and cook down until fully reduced. Add the stock and reduce by half (you are not exactly reducing so much as hydrating the mushrooms). Add the rosemary, thyme, parsley and butter. Stir with a wooden spoon to incorporate the butter. Season with salt and pepper. Evenly spoon the chanterelles over the 4 pieces of toasted bread and garnish with shaved Parmesan.
Wild Mushroom Risotto
350-500g fresh wild mushrooms cleaned and sliced
1 medium onion, finely chopped
350g arborio rice
1 litre good stock
at least 110g fresh parmesan
1 tbsp best olive oil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a large pan bring the stock almost to the boil and keep hot on a very low flame.
In another pan melt the butter and sweat the onion until softened but not brown. Add the sliced mushrooms and cook for a few more minutes.
Add the rice, stir well and cook until well coated and slightly translucent.
Add a ladle of hot stock and let it simmer gently until absorbed by the rice. Add another, and so on, until the rice is cooked (15-20 minutes). As a general rule for risottos, you need four times as much water as rice, by volume. And the rice is done when tender but still just a tiny bit chalky in the middle.
Check the seasoning and stir in the olive oil, remaining butter and a couple of spoonfuls of grated parmesan.
Serve at once with the rest of the parmesan on the table.
Wild Mushroom Tagliatelle
375g dried tagliatelle
Salt to season
50ml olive oil
1 clove garlic, chopped finely
200g girolle mushrooms
1 tbsp flat-leaf parsley, chopped
25g grated parmesan (or vegetarian alternative), to serve
Add the pasta to a pan of salted boiling water and cook as instructed on the packet (cooking time will normally be around eight minutes). A couple of minutes later, put the oil into a saute pan large enough to hold the cooked pasta and mushrooms and warm over a medium heat. Saute the chopped garlic for 30 seconds before adding the mushrooms for a further three to four minutes. Keep the saute pan warm while the pasta continues to cook, and when it is ready, drain and toss together with the mushrooms. Finish with the chopped flat-leaf parsley and the grated parmesan and serve straight away.
We hope you enjoy these recipes – please get in touch if you have any favourite recipes for wild mushrooms! Bon appetit!