It was a lazy Sunday morning and it was supposed to be a quick stop at the vegetable store to pick up some tomatoes and green chillies. The problem you see, is that my stops are never quick; and they are never just two things. I might have a refrigerator stocked to the point of bursting, but I still am tempted enough to add, what I believe, just a few more things to the basket. The stock was just being unloaded from the truck, when this little box of button mushrooms caught my eye. They were glistening white in the morning light, absolutely blemish free. As much I tried to look away, the iridescent glow kept drawing my eyes back. “Buy me! Buy me!” they kept whispering in my ear. Of course I had to buy them. And then some broccoli, some cherry tomatoes, regular tomatoes, greeny yellow limes, a bunch of fresh coriander leaves and a whole bunch of fruit
At home, I set my mushrooms in a bowl, admiring it from different angles (that’s right, I do strange things like that) when it struck me. I had the perfect idea! I would marinate these little lovelies. Usually I let them marinate overnight. This time I could not wait. I had to have them for lunch. Remember, I had those baguettes as well. A little fruit ( I had bought a lot ) and it would be a perfect little lunch.
With army precision I started slicing my mushrooms. Normally, I would bung them in the bowl whole. But now time was of the essence. These morsels had to be well marinated in a few hours. So I had to subject it to the cruel cut of the knife. Hands on my hips, I surveyed my loot. Oh yes, the limes! Some zesting and squeezing later, they went into the bowl as well. That was my tangy element. Now for some herbs. I did have those coriander leaves but I also had some thyme. So thyme it was. (And what a thyme it was , it was)
I would be completely denying my heritage if I did not add some spice. My choice–chilli pepper flakes. So in that went No marinade is complete without some crushed garlic. A drizzle of olive oil and it was done. I nearly forgot the salt and sugar. NOW it was done. All I had to do was cover it and wait for the magic to happen.
And happen it did. The lime, herbs and spices did their thing and in a few hours, I had the most delicious mushrooms ready to be eaten as is or tossed in a salad.
All I need to do was grill my bread, pile on the mushrooms, sit back and enjoy my meal. On second thoughts, forget the grilling.That took too much time. The baguette was crusty enough for me to forgo that grilling bit. And that, my friends, is how to enjoy your Sunday lunch.
Are you still looking for a recipe. I thought I was pretty clear about what you need to do. In case you did not read close enough, here goes.
1 1/2 to 2 cups of sliced mushrooms (If you have time and they are small enough, you can keep them whole)
Zest and juice of half a lime (Use lemon if you choose or balsamic vinegar if you are feeling rich)
A spoonful of crushed fresh thyme (oregano works just as well)
A clove of garlic crushed
A generous drizzle of olive oil
Salt, Sugar and Chilli- Pepper flakes to taste.
No steps to this one. Just mix it all together. Tumble it into a jar or bottle and set it aside. If you are using whole mushrooms and marinating it overnight, place in the refrigerator to be enjoyed at your leisure.
There are just so many thing that you can do with this. You could, if you choose, add some finely sliced red onions. I choose not too. One, that is extra work and two, I was not too sure if I wanted the slightly acrid taste of onion that afternoon. You could add chopped chillies instead of flakes. The choice is entirely yours.
You will find that the mushrooms shrink a wee bit and the marinade increases in volume. This is perfectly normal. The left over marinade makes a great salad dressing. Or you could do what I did. Use the crusty bits of bread to soak up the juices. Either way it tastes great. Serve it as an appetizer with a glass of red or tossed in a salad, or, be like me. Everytime you open the refrigerator, open the jar and pop a mushroom in your mouth. The recipe and the method must have given you some idea as to the flexibility of this wonderful recipe. Go ahead and experiment and make it your own.