It’s been six years since our visit to lovely San Sebastian, a coastal town firmly ensconced in the Basque Country of Spain. A relatively new cookbook for Russ, The Basque Book (by Alexandra Raij with Eder Montero) made us fall in love with the cuisine all over again—although we’ve been pretty regular Spanish chefs in the interim.
We were heading to a small house party at the home of friends Paula and Mike and wanted to contribute a couple of appetizers. One of them, Marinated Mushrooms with Vermouth and Garlic, was a simple recipe from The Basque Book. Snappy to make, they can be popped into your mouth right away (or at least once they’ve cooled), but if for some odd reason you have any left over, they are even better a day or two later—so you might want to make an extra batch—just sayin’.
The final step is to thread the ‘shrooms onto little skewers, but we didn’t bother. Simply plating them in a serving dish with a large spoon and a side of crusty baguette to mop up the tasty sauce was party-friendly enough. Vegetarian- and vegan-approved.
Marinated Mushrooms with Vermouth and Garlic
- 1 tsp minced garlic (OK, I used 1 Tbsp.)
- 1//2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 1/2 pounds small, white button mushrooms
- Kosher salt
- 1 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1 bunch flat-leaf parsley, chopped
- 3 Tbsp dry vermouth
- Juice of 1 lemon
- In a large saucepan, warm the garlic and oil over medium heat for about 30 seconds. Be careful not to burn the garlic.
- Add the mushrooms and 1 tsp salt. Cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes, until the mushrooms begin to release their juices and shrink just a little.
- Add the pepper flakes and parsley, and cook for about 2 minutes longer.
- Add the vermouth and deglaze the pan, stirring to dislodge any browned bit. Cook for about 6 more minutes, until the remaining liquid has a syrupy consistency.
- Remove from the heat, add a pinch of salt, and stir in the lemon juice. Transfer the mushrooms and their liquid to a dish, let cool, cover, and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
- Thread the mushrooms on bamboo skewers, arrange on a platter, pour the liquid from the dish over the mushrooms, and serve at room temperature.