How are you? What have you been cooking lately?
A few weeks ago, I went back to Borough Market with 2 friends to see what was in season and what little treats I would splurge on. Within the first 20 minutes, we were drooling over mounds and mounds of yeasty bready heavenliness.
Stand after stand, aisle after aisle of amazing bakers’ craftmanship on display. Perfectly baked, rustic and fresh – each roll was just begging to be relished with a pungent cheese from the neighboring stand.
However, not five minutes afterwards, my attention gravitated towards my favorite autumnal ingredient: MUSHROOMS. Yes, I adore mushrooms in any way, shape or form. Actually one of my favorite things from the market is this delicious vegetarian mushroom pate – unfortunately, nowhere to be found on this occasion.
More specifically, my attention fell on this mushroom. It was gorgeous, looked like a coral or a flower. Its colour a very light peach was like nothing I had ever seen before… I had to have it. Even better that it looked to have the amazing texture of an oyster mushroom.
Then there were these bluefooted mushrooms(actually more periwinkle, but pied blue is what they are called in French, so we’ll go with blue). These look much like the normal white button mushrooms, except that their stem is blue! Trippy and wierdly amazing… are you sure they are safe to eat?? The lady who worked the stall told me these had a slight bite to them, a little bitterness.
Finally, after looking through all the varieties of mushrooms she had in her display I chose a couple more varieties(among them some girolles) and went home.
The instructions I was given were pretty simple: just quickly sautee them in butter, garlic and parsley – except for the 2 large ones which were best served sliced and grilled in the oven. That is my favorite way to eat any mushroom at any time, simply served on a fresh warm baguette. By the time I got to cooking however, there was no baguette around, so I decided to serve it on a bed of barely wilted spinach and crisply baked potatoes!
Mushrooms with Wilted Spinach and Blistered Potatoes
Serves 2 – 40 minutes max
- 500 grams baby potatoes
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 600 grams mixed mushrooms
- 600 grams young spinach leaves
- 3 cloves minced garlic
- 3 tbsp butter
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley
- Coarse salt and Fresh ground black pepper
- Scrub your baby potatoes well, and place in a pot to boil or 10-15 minutes, until they are just cooked through. Remove from hot water and let drain in a colander.
- Preheat the oven on grill setting at 200˚C (400˚F), placing a deep heavy metal roasting pan with 2 tbsp olive oil to heat.
- When the oven is thoroughly heated and oil is very hot, VERY CAREFULLY, remove the roasting pan from the oven and place the potatoes in the hot oil one at a time. (Careful not to splash yourself with oil as it is really hot) With a fork lightly burst the skins of each potato(leaving most of the potato in tact). Once all potatoes have been lightly burst gently toss around the oil to ensure even coating, sprinkle with coarse salt and place in the oven to roast for 15 minutes. Flip them over and roast for another 10 minutes. Turn off oven and leave potatoes to stay warm.
- While your potatoes are baking, chop up your mushrooms in slices or pieces (depending on type of mushroom used) and place in hot non-stick skillet. Let the mushrooms cook alone until they release their natural moisture and flavor. Then, add the butter and garlic and cook until fragrant. Sprinkle over with parsley, stir through to incorporate flavor add salt and pepper to taste. Set aside in a warm place.
- In a hot skillet, place your spinach and cover with a lid for 2 minutes. Uncover and gently folder the spinach from the bottom over the upper most layer of leaves to enable the heat the circulate faster throughout the spinach without over cooking it.
- Now get ready to move quick: As soon as the last leaf turns slightly soft, transfer the spinach to 2 serving plates. Then divide mushroom mixture between 2 plates and then accompany by a couple potatoes still sizzling from the oven. Sprinkle with coarse salt and fresh ground black pepper and serve immediately. ENJOY!!