Mushroom Meadow

After a New Year’s Eve that included cheese fondue, gin & tonic and, for some reason, large handfuls of salty microwave popcorn (NB: they would have been even larger handfuls if I hadn’t dropped so many pieces on the floor – I thought I was fairly good at dancing and eating at the same time, but I guess my skills need some work after all – okay, in my defense, I do have really small hands), the first days of 2016 call for something a little more nutritious. This mushroom salad is easy to put together and does the trick. 

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Yes, that is a miniature Chianti bottle in the background. Note to self: find more relevant props.

The dish you see here is a slightly changed version of the original “mushroom meadow” recipe my mother gave me and which uses lettuce and spring onions instead of radishes. Both versions are very tasty, but today I craved something a little more fresh and crunchy. I also used almonds instead of hazelnuts, because the latter seem to have fallen out of favour with my local supermarket. Did I miss something? Are hazelnuts suddenly not cool anymore? 

Ingredients (for 2):

250 g chestnut mushrooms, chopped in small wedges

1 tbsp of dried rosemary, or 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary

1 avocado, sliced

4 cocktail vine tomatoes, sliced

1 bunch of pink radishes, finely sliced

100 g alfalfa sprouts

almond flakes or chopped hazelnuts, lightly toasted

soft blue cheese (I used Castello Blue, but  a mild Gorgonzola would also work really well)

3 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1 clove of garlic, finely chopped or pressed

salt

pepper

  • toast the nuts in a dry frying pan and set aside.
  • get two large flat plates

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  • prepare all the ingredients: finely slice the radishes, slice the tomatoes and the avocado and arrange on the plates along with the alfalfa sprouts.

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  • slice the mushrooms into small wedges. Heat some olive oil in a large frying pan and fry them for a few minutes with rosemary, salt and pepper. Leave to cool for a little and arrange on the two plates.
  • Make a dressing with 3 tbsp olive oil, 1tbsp balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper and 1 clove of garlic. Drizzle this dressing over the salad.
  • Add chunks of blue cheese and top off with the toasted almonds or hazelnuts.
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