from one generation to the next
I remember my Dad collecting baskets full of large field mushrooms in the late autumn after heavy rain, from the cow paddocks of a friend’s farm. Dad would simply clean the mushrooms, slice them thickly and put them into a hot pan to cook in their own plentiful juices. Dad relished his black earthy sautéed field mushrooms, but he ate them alone, plain eating Mum was appalled at the thought and my brother and I considered too young for such dubious delicacies.
Foragers collect many varieties of edible fungi during autumn locally. The common field mushrooms are considered the most lowly. I love exotic fungi but prefer to stick with what I can buy commercially, that way I know no toxic fungi will pass my lips.
Swiss brown (portobello) mushrooms roast, grill and barbecue beautifully. Unlike cultivated white mushrooms they have a satisfying meaty texture and a rich earthy flavour. Delicious as an accompaniment beside a simple grilled steak, they are also make a scrumptious lunch served simply with salad. Serve roasted mushrooms on top of crusty sourdough toast for a hearty breakfast.
Allow 3 medium sized mushrooms per serve as they shrink significantly during cooking
Sprigs of fresh time
Garlic, finely sliced
Extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 180c or the grill to a medium high heat.
Lightly oil a heatproof tray.
Wipe the mushroom clean, then place them on the tray.
To each mushroom add a few slices of garlic, a few sprigs of thyme, a generous grinding of black pepper and a few flakes of sea salt.
Drizzle the mushrooms with olive oil.
Bake for 10 – 15 minutes until cooked or grill for 8-10 minutes.