I’ve given this some thought and have concluded that people can essentially be distilled into two groups. In the first you’ll find organised folks, those with neat cupboards and even neater fridges. They own shares in Tupperware and everything in their kitchen is neatly colour-coded, lined up like Westpoint graduates on parade.
Then there’s the other kind, those of us who use empty ice cream containers for freezing leftover bredie. Because paying actual money for a piece of plastic seems all wrong when you get to eat the ice cream and keep the bowl for free. And the teaspoon of tinned tuna that didn’t make it onto the lunchtime baguette goes in a marg tub – where it will stay forgotten in the back corner of the fridge until it births a new life form.
I wish I were part of the first group. I’m not. And because I know how I am, I generally avoid little bits of leftover fresh ingredients. But if I can’t, I use it up real fast in a recipe that is simple but moreish. This cheesy mushroom mozzarella toastie is my go-to for when I have just a handful of mushrooms to play with.
All you need is…
4 tbs extra virgin olive oil
½ tsp finely chopped garlic
1 tsp finely chopped rosemary
250g mushrooms (plain button mushrooms or a mix of exotic mushrooms)
1 tbs extra virgin olive oil
2 tbs butter
heaped ½ tsp fresh thyme leaves
tbs finely chopped parsley
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
1 tbs lemon juice
generous grind of black pepper
generous pinch of salt
8 slices ciabatta or sourdough
2 cups mozzarella (Tip: I freeze grated mozzarella to ensure I always have a stash on hand)
Add the garlic and rosemary to 4 tbs olive oil and set aside to infuse. Clean the mushrooms by gently wiping them with a damp cloth then slice them. Heat a thick-bottomed non-stick saucepan and add the olive oil and butter. Add the mushrooms and stir-fry on highish heat until they are cooked through. (Cook’s note: Mushrooms contain a lot of moisture and if the heat if your pan is too low, the mix will become watery, sooo not what you want.)
Once the mushrooms are cooked through, add the thyme, parsley, lemon zest and lemon juice and cook stirring for a further half a minute. Add the black pepper and salt to taste. Transfer to a plate and wipe the frying pan clean.
Lightly brush the bread with the rosemary-infused olive oil. Turn the bread over so the oily sides face down. Heap the non-oiled side with mushroom mix and mozzarella. Top with the second slice (oiled side facing out). Pop in a frying pan over medium low heat until toasted on one side. Flip over carefully and toast until golden on the other side. Check if the cheese is melted, if not, keep it in the pan for a few seconds more. Slice and eat right away. Stringy, cheesy, mushroomy awesomeness.