Spring is a season where comfort foods reign. It is not uncommon even in Spring for my home to be filled with warm, fragrant and earthy aromas of a slow cooked roast or bubbling crock pot, but, there is absolutely NOTHING on the planet as comforting to me as a soul-satisfying creamy mushroom topped ciabatta. —bellini
2 - 4
loaf ciabatta bread or bruschetta loaf
morel mushrooms, ends trimmed
1 or 2
small garlic cloves, minced
small shallots, minced
dry white wine or white vermouth
or more heavy cream
fresh chopped chives or scallions
minced fresh herbs (parsley, chervil or savory)
Coarse sea salt such as fleur de sel or Maldon, for garnish.
Cut the bread into 1–1.5-cm thick slices. Heat a ridged skillet and grill the bread slices on both sides until lightly toasted (you don’t need to use any oil). Keep to one side.
Using a pastry brush or a clean cloth, brush excess dirt from mushrooms (do not soak or rinse with water). Slice mushrooms in half lengthwise and brush away any grit; chop into 1/4-inch pieces if large. If they are small keep whole.
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. When the butter foams add the garlic and shallots and sauté until they soften and just begin to colour, approximately 3 minutes. Reduce the heat to low and add the morels and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes. Add wine, chives and herbs, cover, and cook for 3 minutes more until the wine has bubbled away in the pan.
Lower the heat and add the cream and simmer until slightly thickened, 2 minutes longer. How much cream you use depends on how rich and creamy you want the dish to be.
To serve, place the bread onto a plate and spoon over the warm creamy mushrooms.Sprinkle with additional chives, garnish with sea salt, and serve immediately.