Australian Mushrooms and Parsley on Toast
Cook Time 35 minutes
100g slippery jack mushrooms
100g pine mushrooms
100g grey ghost mushrooms
1 bunch picked continental parsley leaves
200g peeled garlic cloves
50g caster sugar
Sea salt, for seasoning
4 sprigs thyme
150mL clarified butter
½ loaf dark sourdough rye bread or light rye
Preheat oven to 200°C.
For the caramelized garlic, start by placing the cloves into a small fry pan along with the butter, caster sugar, four sprigs of thyme stripped from the stem and 150mL water. Place on a medium heat and allow liquid to come to a boil (approx. four minutes). Transfer to preheated oven and cook until liquid has evaporated, garlic is tender and it is starting to take a little colour (approx. 10-15 minutes). Remove from oven and place back on the heat to deepen the colour of the garlic cloves for about five minutes. They should be soft, sticky and sweet. Set aside.
For the pine mushrooms, start by using a small pastry brush to remove any grit or residue on the surface of the mushroom. Avoid washing mushrooms as they are like a sponge and will become waterlogged.
Scrape the gills of the pine mushrooms into a bowl and set aside for adding later.
Cut the pine mushrooms into large triangular wedge pieces depending on the size of the mushroom.
Make sure grey ghost and slippery jack mushrooms are also both brushed and checked for grit.
Keep grey ghost whole as they have a beautiful shape and collapse quite quickly when heated. Slice the slippery jack mushrooms into thick pieces approximately 2cm wide so they still have a great meaty quality once cooked.
Heat clarified butter in a large fry pan and allow to get a light haze of smoke. (Ideally over wood fire or BBQ). Cut bread into thick slices and grill on a very hot griddle pan. Add in the wedges of pine mushroom first as it is the most dense and requires the most cooking. Season lightly with salt and sauté over high heat for approximately one minute. Refrain from seasoning with pepper at this stage of the cooking.
Add in slippery jack mushroom pieces and season lightly, continue to sauté over high heat for about a minute. By this stage, the pine mushrooms will have developed a nice colour and the slippery jacks will have begun to soften.
Add in a desired amount of caramelized garlic cloves depending on your own love of garlic, the thyme leaves, the grey ghost mushrooms and the butter. Make sure pan remains on a very high heat to avoid mushrooms stewing in their own juices. Taste the contents of the pan and adjust with more salt, a squeeze of lemon juice, parsley leaves and a good crack of freshly ground black pepper.
Spoon everything from pan over good quality thickly cut grilled bread. Sprinkle the gills of the pine mushrooms on top of the cooked mushrooms. Eat straight away and enjoy three of Australia’s best ingredients.