Okay, pretend you are eating the best fresh porcini you can find. Unfortunately you are not. I refuse to call the little funguses I’m using here anything but brown mushrooms. They’ve been cultivated in this country since the early 20th Century. I see no reason to refer to them as “cremini” which in Italian means “chocolate creams”, huh? Alright it sounds Italian but it’s just a marketing tool. Portobello/portabella is even more confusing. As it means either “beautiful port” or “beautiful door” and sometimes that gets mixed up in common usage and supermarket signage. Those are grown up caps of cremini, after the gills open. Perfectly respectable mushroom in every other sense apart from the dumb names. Now, if you can find actual porcini (not the dried kind) you can go with those. Be prepared to harden your arteries with butter and egg and crème here.
Anyway this is essentially a goose egg omelet intended as a supper for 1 to 2 people. I like using goose eggs because of their impressive size, the color of the big yolk and the fact that they beat up into a nice airy omelet which makes a spongy platform for the mushrooms. This is not a traditional French omelet; closer to a frittata. I use the mushroom mix as more of a topping than a filling, but the mushrooms are the heroes. They should come out buttery, creamy and heroic on the stage of the egg. You might want to roast some radishes to go along with this. And as you will see, fire marshall Pierino is back to setting stuff ablaze again.
1 goose egg (or substitute two duck eggs or two hen eggs)
6 ounces fresh brown mushrooms
1 clove garlic finely chopped
freshly cut chives
About four tablespoons butter in all (but you can use more)
Salt and pepper
In This Recipe
Rinse your mushrooms, perhaps using a soft brush. Use a towel to get them dry. Trim the tough bottom ends and then thinly slice.
In a non-reactive pan heat up about 2 tbs of the butter, add the garlic and color lightly
Add salt and pepper to taste along with the fresh thyme leaves into the mushroom and butter. With a wooden spoon mix these together. The mushrooms will throw off water which you should let evaporate.
Add the premeasured grappa (not out of the bottle please) and ignite. When it’s cooked off set the mushrooms on a back burner, off heat while you cook the egg (s).
Break your goose egg into a bowl and using a fork, beat thoroughly. Beat in the chives.
Heat up an omelet pan and add two more tablespoons of butter. You can flip the egg as it omelitizes or half flip it but remember it’s not going to be filled.
Heat up an omelet pan and add two more tablespoons of butter. You can flip it or half flip it but remember it’s not going to be filled.
Turn the omelet folded or flat, onto a plate, and top with the mushrooms.
Note to cook: one of the things the flaming grappa does in addition to adding a subtle flavor is to pull out still more liquid from the mushrooms.
Standup commis flâneur, and food historian. Pierino's background is in Italian and Spanish cooking but of late he's focused on frozen desserts. He is now finishing his cookbook, MALAVIDA! Can it get worse? Yes, it can. Visit the Malavida Brass Knuckle cooking page at Facebook and your posts are welcome there.