The moment I knew that I was going to marry my wife may have been when I realized that she loved mushrooms with a wild passion just like me — I knew we were bound by destiny! This dish is made for mushroom lovers.You might simply faint from pleasure.
BUT WAIT — if you’re thinking “I hate mushrooms” (really, what’s wrong with you??) I challenge you to try this. If any dish will make you a mushroom-lover, this is the one!
Total Time: 25 minutes Serves: 4
- 2 lb. assorted mushrooms, cleaned and chopped
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1 cup chopped sweet onions (or 4 large shallots)
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced (2 if you’re a wimp)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped (optional)
A note about selecting mushrooms: I like to use an assortment of mushrooms — whichever look good at the store. My favorite trio of mushrooms to use for this dish are portabello, crimini, and shitake. But since the store was out of criminis (and the oyster mushrooms looked bad), I opted for large white-caps instead. You simply want to use a variety to increase the flavor. Here are the baby portabellos and shitakes, respectively:
Begin by cleaning the mushrooms. This needs to be done with care because mushrooms are basically natural sponges — they will soak up any liquid you put near them. Although you can give a very dirty mushroom a super-quick rinse with water, if possible, simply wipe them clean with a damp cloth. Mine looked so pretty after they were cleaned up.
Before chopping them, remove the stems out of all the mushrooms. For most, it should be pretty straight forward to pop the little buggers right out like this:
This is a great time to employ
child labor little angels to help you (especially when they have freshly painting — and clean! — fingernails.)
Chop the cleaned mushrooms as fine as you’d like. I prefer to have something to bite into, so my definition of “chopped” translates into rather large pieces. The larger the pieces, the longer the cooking time (by a minute or two, nothing to worry about). So whatever feels good to you, knowing that they will only cook down very slightly — translation: the way you cut them will be the way you’ll eat them.
I’ve often seen mushrooms cooked with shallots, but I like (LOVE) the flavor of sweet onions, so I opt for an onion here. TIP: A shallot is simply a light-flavored onion. If you don’t like the typical bite of an onion, even the relative soft bite of a sweet onion, then try using shallots. You’ll get the flavor without the edge. Chop the onion pretty finely to allow them to melt into the oil, but do not mince it!
Heat the oil over medium-high heat until warmed through, then pour in the onions with half the salt and pepper. Allow the onions to sweat and saute for about 5 minutes or until translucent. NOTE: There will seem to be an excessive amount of oil in the pan, but this is right! As I mentioned above, mushrooms are a sponge and the oil will quickly disappear once they’re added.
Once the onions have made your house smell like heaven and you don’t think that the smell could possibly get any better …time to add the godfather of goodness (hold on to your butts!):
Let the butter melt in the onions before adding the mushrooms.
Let’s pause to enjoy that sight.
Butter in oil with onions… can you smell the joy??
After you catch your breath (one can become a bit overwhelmed at such a sight), it’s time to add the mushrooms.Pour them in and stir them around. As I said, the oil will seem to disappear. After a minute or two, the mushrooms will sweat out their moisture and the pan won’t seem so dry.
The mushrooms should saute for about 8 minutes. Stir them every couple minutes so they don’t burn. While they’re doing their good things, mince the garlic. I love garlic (who doesn’t??), so I use 3 BIG cloves. For the faint of heart, 2 is all you need.TIP: Crush the cloves with the side of your knife before chopping/mincing them. Come on, smack ’em good! One secret to easily mincing garlic — sprinkle the crushed cloves with some salt (see second picture below). This will keep the garlic drier and help you mince more effectively.
Once the mushrooms have released their moisture and have cooked for 8-10 minutes, mix in the minced garlic. Continue to cook for 1-2 more minutes, just to make sure the garlic has released its oil but not before it fully cooks.
Now it’s time to savor the richness. Prepare yourself — it’s a little piece of heaven!
Although this side dish can be served with anything (or alone!), I prefer it served with a protein that can stand up to its richness. Tonight I served it over a steak. Does it get any better than this?
Chris, this post made me laugh out loud! Butter is absolutely the godfather of goodness. I have a recipe for savory mushroom bread pudding that I bet you would love! I’ll email it to you!
Taylor — I’d love to hate that recipe (and I’ll let you know when I try it!). Thanks for visiting the site!
Looks delicious!! I loooove mushrooms! Have you tried smitten kitchen’s mushroom bourguinon http://smittenkitchen.com/2009/01/mushroom-bourguignon/ ? It sounds a lot like this and is just so good!
That looks absolutely fantastic …wow. I’ll be trying that very soon. Thanks!