The other day, my friend Anna-Karin Skillen and I were talking about chanterelles. They’re in season in her native Sweden right now, as well as in the U.S. on the northwest coast, in New England and other spots. I’ve been drooling lately watching a Facebook friend from Seattle document her family’s foraging trips, the kitchen table blanketed with fresh (and free!) chanterelles, soon be thrown in a scorching skillet or tossed in buttery pasta or noodle soup. Just this week, the Boston-based radio program, Here and Now, featured a segment on fall mushrooms, complete with easy recipes by resident chef Kathy Gunst, who had picked up several different wild mushroom varieties from Boston-area farmers markets.
All this put me in the mood to ‘shroom, and I loved the sound of Anna-Karin’s use of chanterelles. She makes a Scandinavian open-faced sandwich, like a French tartine. Since they weren’t in season now at our local Red Stick Farmers Market, I got them from Costco (where Anna-Karin had also retrieved them). I know this flies in the face of locavore strictures, but hey, a girl’s gotta eat. And for the record, I faithfully pick them up from Greenwell Springs farmer David Spiess at our mid-week farmers market in the summertime.
Anna-Karin’s recipe involves chopping mushrooms and sautéeing them with all kinds of good stuff, spooning the mixture onto hearty slices of toast, topping them with cheese and sliding them under the broiler. She slathers either mustard or Boursin on the bread before adding the mushrooms for an extra burst of flavor.
This was a fantastic use of wild mushrooms. Here’s my version:
Chanterelles on Toast
Makes about 12 appetizer-sized toasts
8 oz. fresh chanterelles, wiped clean of dirt, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoons chopped shallot
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1/4 cup dry white wine
1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
Kosher salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
Half baguette (I prefer whole grain)
1/2 cup grated Gruyère
Heat a cast iron or ovenproof skillet to high until very hot. Add mushrooms. Sauté for about 3-5 minutes, until mushrooms are soft and water has been released and evaporates. Add butter and olive oil to mushrooms, and stir. Add chopped shallot and sauté for 1 minute. Add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add wine and cook for 3-5 minutes, until reduced by half. Add rosemary and salt and pepper. Set mixture aside.
Heat oven to 400 degrees. Slice baguette into ¼ inch-thick slices and toast for about 2 minutes on each side until evenly crisp, but still chewy. Remove from oven. Turn on broiler.
Spread mustard on one side of baguette slices. Top with a couple of teaspoons of mushroom mixture. Top with grated Gruyère and slide under broiler just until cheese melts.
Serve as an appetizer, or an accompaniment to a salad or soup.
A version of this post, with photos by Chelsea Caldwell, is featured on my blog, Spatula Diaries, for 225 Magazine.