Tonight I broke out one of my favorites for dinner--mushroom toast. I guess you'd call it an open-faced sandwich. I toast some bread and pile on sauteed mushrooms, top with mozzarella cheese and broil for a few minutes, and voila, dinner!
I start by slicing about half a pound of mushrooms and chopping a couple of cloves of garlic.
I then simmer the garlic and a little bit of crushed red pepper flakes (to your preferred taste level) in a couple tablespoons of olive oil. When we were driving north from San Diego my mom and I stopped and bought
some a lot of California olive oil. Tonight's oil choice was Calolea made from early harvest manzanillo olives. The label says "very grassy" and it sure wasn't lying! This oil doesn't really suit my taste for bread dipping, but it certainly worked well when cooking up my mushrooms.
Once the garlic and the crushed red pepper had simmered for a little bit to mellow the garlic and kind of infuse the oil with its flavor, I added the sliced mushrooms and proceeded to cook them rather slowly. I use roughly medium heat and cook the mushrooms until they're not giving off much more moisture. When they start to look almost ready, slice up a loaf of bread and toast those slices so they're ready for mushroom topping.
We got four pieces of toast from those 8 ounces of mushrooms. I pile the mushrooms on, try to spread them as evenly as possible, and then top with a thin slice of mozzarella cheese. The toasts then go under the broiler to melt the cheese. I find the mozzarella moderates the heat of the crushed red pepper, and it can help hold the mushrooms together so they don't fall off the bread so easily. We had our mushroom toast dinner with a big salad, but if you're looking for a quick, easy snack the toasts are great on their own!