They may look like little whoopie pies, but these mushroom appetizers are born to be served with an ice-cold martini or a glass of chilled Sauvignon Blanc. Care to experiment? Try them with a little ouzo, a brisk Gewürztraminer or a brisk Provençal rosé. —tw
Portobello mushrooms (about 14 to 16 mushrooms)
extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 cups
chopped walnuts, preferably toasted
white anchovy fillets (or 2 traditional, canned or jarred in oil)
fresh thyme leaves
fresh oregano leaves
white wine vinegar
zest of 1
lemon (about 1 teaspoon)
red, green, or black Cerignola olives, pitted
Cut off the stem of each mushroom, leaving only the cap (portobellos don’t usually have much stem, anyway). Using a spoon, scoop out the black ribs from the inside of the mushroom cap.
Cut the zucchini lengthwise, into ½ inch thick slices. Brush the mushrooms and zucchini on both sides with the olive oil.
Heat a grill to high. Grill the zucchini until soft and pliable but not mushy; then remove from the grill and set aside. Sprinkle the mushrooms with salt and grill for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until browned on the edges and very soft in the middle. While those cook, finish the tapenade filling.
Add the zucchini and walnuts to the bowl of a food processor and pulse until smooth and creamy. Add the capers, anchovies, thyme, oregano, vinegar, and lemon zest and process, pulsing, until just blended.
Add all of the olives and pulse until the mixture is well combined but still contains fairly coarse chunks of olives.
Place the mushroom on a serving plate, hollow side up. Fill each with the tapenade. (You can use as much or as little as you like.) Cover with another mushroom. Cut in quarters, or for smaller mushrooms, in half, and serve. Garnish with additional chopped walnuts, if desired, by rolling the edge in the nuts.