“Fresh, firm mushrooms have a delicately creamy, almost nutty quality when served raw,” says Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall. “The secret is to slice them thinly and season them well, as in this salad, where they’re pepped up with preserved lemon, chilli and rocket leaves. Enoki mushrooms, which have long, slender stems and tiny white caps, make a quirky addition here, but the salad is great with any fresh mushrooms.” This recipe is from Hugh’s new cookbook River Cottage Light & Easy (Bloomsbury; $49.99).
Serves 2 or 4 as a starter
100g chestnut or open cap mushrooms
75g white button mushrooms
50g enoki mushrooms (optional)
2 tablespoons extra virgin rapeseed or olive oil, plus extra to finish
¼ small red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped
2 good handfuls of rocket leaves
1 tablespoon chopped preserved lemon rind
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Wipe the mushrooms with a damp cloth to remove any dirt. Cut off any tough stem ends. Using a sharp knife, thinly slice the chestnut and button mushrooms. Put them in a bowl with the enoki, if using.
- Add the oil, a generous squeeze of lemon, the chilli and some salt and pepper. Toss well and leave for a couple of hours if you can, to allow the flavours to mingle. If you don’t have the luxury of time just crack on and it will still be great.
- Arrange the rocket and dressed mushrooms on serving plates and scatter over the chopped preserved lemon rind. Give it a final generous trickle of oil, another squeeze of lemon and a touch more salt and pepper, then serve.