I believe I’ve mentioned before that I was not a fan of mushrooms—at all—until I was nearly 30. Now it seems I can’t get enough of them. I’ve grown to appreciate their meaty, rich flavor, plus they’re practically calorie-free and are packed with nutrients. This week’s recipe brings big mushroom flavor on a very small budget, both monetary and time-wise. With only five simple ingredients, you can make a perfectly satisfying, rich side-dish that still remains to be wholesome and fresh. I love mushrooms more and more as the years pass; and who can deny the deliciousness of brown butter & garlic, lemon & thyme?
Here’s what you’ll need:
1 lb. baby portobello/cremini mushrooms, wiped clean and stems trimmed
4 T. olive oil, approximately, divided
1/4 c. butter
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 T. fresh thyme leaves
Juice of half a lemon, 1-2 T.
salt and pepper to taste
Begin by preheating the oven to 400F.
In a medium bowl, drizzle the mushrooms with olive oil and toss to coat them as well as you can. The oil will soak into them pretty quickly, so you might do this step twice. Then sprinkle with a pinch of salt and pepper, toss again, and turn them out onto a rimmed baking sheet that has been lightly sprayed or drizzled with a little more olive oil (or lined with parchment). Spread them out in an even layer, tops down, leaving as much space between as possible. Bake them for about 20-25 minutes until they are dark brown and caramelized.
In the last few minutes the mushrooms are baking, heat a large skillet over medium heat and add the butter and another drizzle of olive oil. Cook the butter just until it begins to smell nutty and turns toasty brown. This won’t take long, so watch it carefully; it will burn before you know it (adding the olive oil helps prevent this, though).
Add the mushrooms to the pan and toss to coat with the butter; cook another minute or so. Remove the pan from the heat and add the garlic and thyme. The pan will be hot enough to cook the rawness out of the garlic without burning it. Being careful of spatter, add the lemon juice, tossing once more, and serve immediately.