Up until 2016, I was convinced I didn’t like mushrooms. They were just slimy, horrible things that were snuck into almost all vegetarian meals without my permission. Then, my now husband and I went to Edinburgh for the weekend with some friends, where we ended up having dinner in a lovely Italian restaurant. Back then, veggies didn’t usually have many options when eating out, and unfortunately, despite the large menu, this place was no different. The vegetarian options were very limited, and the only dish that I remotely liked the sound of, was ravioli stuffed with herbs, nuts, and, you guessed it, mushrooms! I didn’t want to cause a fuss, everyone else in our group (all meat eaters) had chosen what they were having and were really looking forward to it, I couldn’t make everyone get up and go somewhere else. Besides, it was a Saturday night, in a busy city, there was no way we’d get into anywhere else without a reservation.
So I ordered the dreaded mushroom ravioli, and hoped for the best, I could at least eat the sauce with some garlic bread dipped in it. I tried the first pasta parcel tentatively, waiting for the slug-like texture of the mushrooms to slither across my tongue, but to my astonishment, it was delicious. The flavour, the texture, the presentation, it was all spot on. I ate every last scrap of that meal and looked at mushrooms with curiosity rather than disgust from then on. I started trying them more when eating out and using them in dishes at home, and I soon discovered, that when cooked correctly, I actually really like mushrooms. They’re versatile, quick and easy to cook with and full of vitamins and minerals. I now eat them a few times a week, and enjoy experimenting with them in different dishes.
Garlic mushrooms are a much-loved staple starter in the UK. They’re on almost every restaurant menu, but in my experience, are rarely cooked at home. You’ll be amazed by how tasty, quick and easy this recipe is, even if you’re not sure about whether you like mushrooms, or if you’re not confident in the kitchen, I highly recommend you try this recipe. The flavour is fantastic – creamy with a hint of parmesan, black pepper and parsley and it literally takes about 20 minutes to make, from start to finish. It’s perfect as a starter for a dinner party or date night, served simply on a slice of focaccia, toast or crusty bread. Add a side of fresh spinach as well for a yummy lunch. Leftovers (if you have any) can be stored in an air-tight container in the fridge for a couple of days, and can be reheated once in the microwave.
Ready in 20mins (5 mins prep, 15mins cook) – serves 2.
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- A knob of butter
- 200g of button mushrooms, washed, any large ones chopped in half
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed and finely chopped
- 150mls of double cream
- 25g of parmesan cheese, grated or crumbled
- A good pinch of black pepper
- A good pinch of mustard powder
- A good pinch of parsley
- A slice of focaccia, a drizzle of truffle oil and a good pinch of chopped chives to serve, if desired
- Put a large frying pan on the hob over a medium / high heat and add the oil and butter.
- Once melted, add the mushrooms and cook for about 10 mins, until lightly browned on all sides.
- Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
- Turn the heat down slightly and add the cream, parmesan, black pepper, mustard powder and parsley.
- Stir well and cook for about 5 mins until the sauce darkens slightly and thickens.
- Serve on crusty bread or focaccia with a drizzle of truffle oil and a sprinkle of chives.
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