The fall season is rich and offers a chance to withdraw our summer wings and focus inward.
Our energy moves closer to the core, just like a plant in preparation for the cold. However, if you sense the weight of cold weather dampening your spirit, rummage around in the woods for some wild porcini mushrooms: they may inspire an earthy dish to delight you and your vegetarian friends, alike!
Grilled Porcini Salad
- 5 fresh porcini (or chanterelle or Portobello) mushrooms
- 1 head of red leaf lettuce
- 2 bunches of mizuna
- 2 stalks of celery, sliced thin on the diagonal
- ½ cup chives
- 2- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed and chopped fine
- 1 bunch of parsley, chopped rough but fine
- Half cup of parmigiano reggiano cheese
Hike into the nearby hills and gather mezzo kilo di porcini mushrooms. Clean them carefully with a cloth, scrape off dirt with a knife and slice mushroom to medium width. Rub with garlic and parsley. Grill them on an outdoor grill, or inside on a grill pan. Don’t overcook. Add salt and pepper. Set aside.
Meanwhile, mix the salad with the celery, chives and herbs. Toss with a generous amount of extra virgin olive oil and a smidgen of red wine vinegar. Toss with the grated parmigiano cheese. Compose the salad on the plate and add grilled mushrooms.
For more information on longtime elephant columnist and Slow Foodie Peggy Markel, please visit her website.