There is a cafe within hungover stumbling distance of my flat called Lazy Social. During a particularly party-filled weekend over the summer I ended up there for breakfast, head throbbing and dry-mouthed, twice in 24 hours. In part this was because I was craving their large plate of garlic and parsley butter mushrooms on sourdough, which I foolishly overlooked in favour of pancakes on the first visit. It’s not to say that I purposely went out of my way to imbibe in order to make the correct hangover brunch choice. But sometimes life presents you with opportunities and you just have to lean into them.
After my second breakfast there, the one I had spent the previous 24 hours obsessing over turned out to be a garlic and herb butter-devoid disappointment. So since then I’ve made sure to keep a stock of ingredients, because even in my most incapacitated, frying a few mushrooms and tumbling them over toast is well within anyone’s grasp.
This version is a slight departure from my midsummer cravings, because lets face it, sometimes it’s kinder not arriving to an event surrounded by an allium haze. Most greengrocers are now stocked with the beautiful wild mushrooms that have just come into season. The earthy flavours of mushrooms pairs beautifully with woody herbs like thyme, which happens to be one of my favourites. That may have a little to do with the fact that it thrives in the UK and therefore I alway have an abundance growing on my balcony. I love the slight tang of sourdough, but I think the flavours of the mushrooms really shine next to the nutty undertones of wholemeal bread. This is a really fun way to use up those last few slightly stale slices from a really good quality (maybe homemade) loaf.
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serves 2 recipe by Jennifer Brown
10 mixed wild mushrooms
1 tbsp olive oil
4 sprigs of thyme
1 tbsp butter
salt and pepper to toast
half a ball of mozzarella
2 thick slices of bread lightly toasted
- Heat a large frying pan over a medium heat and add the olive oil. Clean and slice the mushrooms, and add them to the pan in a single layer making sure they are not too crowded (crowding stops them from browning properly).
- Shake the pan occasionally to stop the mushrooms from sticking. After 5 minutes or when they are golden brown on the underside, turn them over and cook for a further 5 minutes, or until they are brown all over.
- When the mushrooms are browned to your liking, add the butter to the pan and the leaves of the thyme. Using a wooden spoon stir the mushrooms until they are coated in the herby butter, for two minutes until the butter has slightly reduced. Season the mushrooms to taste.
- Spoon over the toast and top with torn mozzarella and serve hot.