Portobello mushrooms are meatier and nuttier in flavour than button mushrooms – they also hold their shape when you fry them. We used thyme in this dish because we had it to hand, but fresh tarragon would be just as good. Serve with good bread or slices of the crunchy ready-made wholemeal toast you buy at the supermarket.
1 tablespoon rapeseed or olive oil
24 Portobello mushrooms, wiped clean and sliced
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 sprigs of fresh thyme or tarragon, leaves only
2 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
120ml single cream
1. Heat the oil and butter in a large frying pan until you hear it sizzle. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and black pepper and turn the heat to high. Fry for 3-4 minutes, turning the mushrooms over when the first side is golden (turn the heat down if the butter begins to brown). Add the herbs and garlic, toss, and fry for another 1-2 minutes. Add the cream, turn the heat to low and cook for a minute or two until the cream thickens. Serve immediately.
If you need to prepare this in advance, cook the mushrooms and only add the cream when you reheat them.
You can also eat Portobello mushrooms raw: slice them finely, toss with olive oil, finely chopped parsley and minced garlic and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Should you wash mushrooms or just wipe them with a wet cloth?
Some people say that you shouldn’t wash mushrooms because it makes them soft, but that’s not true: mushrooms aren’t that absorbent. Certainly, it’s true that if you wash mushrooms and store them when they are damp, they will deteriorate faster and if you soak them in water, they will become mushy, but if you are cooking them immediately, it’s fine just to wipe them with a damp cloth or sheet of paper towel or rinse them under a cold tap.