mardi, septembre 09, 2008

Mushroom season!

Although you can get many mushrooms all year round, fall is really the time in France where everything seems to be in season and you can get huge amounts of mushrooms for very little money. To celebrate this fact, of course, I went out and bought the most expensive mushrooms I could find. On the way home, I stopped in Monoprix to get a few things and found a huge special display full of mushrooms. They had morels, black trumpets, shiitake, cêpes (porcini) and blewits (pied bleu, or “blue foot”). I grabbed a generous portion of the cêpes and the pied bleus and made my way home.

I’d never had pied bleu mushrooms before, and looking them up on the web revealed that they can actually be poisonous when undercooked. So I decided that I would save them for tomorrow and make a mushroom sauce to go over pasta; I don’t want to poison myself in the interest of making a quick dish.

So for tonight, I decided to make a fricasée of mushrooms and sausages. I had two leftover saucisses de Montbéliard but I think any smoky sausage would do. Anyway, the results were fantastic, so here it is my recipe, in the place of a blog entry.

[Picture taken from noodlepie's Flickr set]

Fricasée aux cêpes et saucisses de Montbéliard


  • 250-500 g (about a pound) of cêpes / porcini mushrooms
  • 2 medium-sized sausages (bratwurst, kielbasa, chorizo, whatever; as long as it’s a bit smoky and has some fat to contribute to the mix)
  • 1 pat of butter (about ¼ cup) at room temperature
  • dry white wine or lemon juice (optional)


  1. Slice sausages into rounds that are about ¼-inch think (½-cm) and place in a dry pan over medium heat.
  2. Start cleaning and slicing the mushrooms. If the mushrooms look clean, give them a quick wipe with a damp cloth and get to work. If they’re covered in dirt (like most mushrooms here), wipe the caps with a damp cloth—taking care not to get any water in the gills on the underside of the cap—and take a peeler to the stems. Don’t peel away too much of the stems! They’re the best part.
  3. Pull off the cap and slice at about the same thickness as the sausages. Take the peeled stems, slice in half lengthwise, and then slice to a similar thickness.
  4. As you’re working on the mushrooms, keep an eye on the sausages. Eventually, they’ll render their fat and then start to brown onto the pan. When they’re beginning to stick, flip them over and let them start browning on the other side.
  5. When there’s a fair bit of fat in the bottom of the pan and the sausages are almost entirely cooked, toss in the mushrooms.
  6. Mix to coat, reduce the heat to medium-low, and cover.
  7. After a few minutes (5-8 mins) the mushrooms should’ve given up a lot of their liquid. Remove the cover, turn up the heat and reduce the liquid in the pan by about half. If you like, this would also be the moment to add a splash of sherry, dry white wine, or lemon juice.
  8. When the sauce can cover the back of a spoon, remove from heat and mix in the butter.
  9. Serve as a side dish in small portions or as a main dish as one large portion.

5 commentaires:

kristy a dit…

Only in France and/or Luis's kitchen would 1/4 c of butter become "a pat." This sounds awesome! I'll have to see if I can find a lowfat sausage to use, and maybe compensate with a bit of cream.

LMGM a dit…

Heh. Regardless of how you shuffle around the recipe, you'll need a bit of fat in the mix to sautée the mushrooms and carry the flavor. If you make the sausage lean, you'll need to use a bit of olive oil at the beginning to lubricate everything. You can also remove the butter altogether and instead use a bit of crème fraiche or sour cream. Avoid yogurt, as it curdles at high temperatures! Or, alternately, you can ditch the butter and just finish it with wine/lemon juice and parsley. However, you'll miss the dairy if it's not there, I think... A combination of a bit of oil at the beginning, lean sausage, and then only about a tablespoon of butter should do it; don't forget that this easily serves two! So the portion isn't that huge.

Anonyme a dit…

I think it's only fair to give proper credit for the photo. Although you found it on my blog and had the image link there, I found the original on Flickr. The photographer is Graham Holliday, who on Flickr calls himself noodlepie.

LMGM a dit…

Thanks for the info! I've replaced the image link with one to noodlepie's image on Flickr, so you shouldn't get any more traffic from my site. Blogger's setup used to create a resized image that it hosted on blogspot to avoid hotlinking, so that the original server would only get traffic on click-through. I just checked the links and it looks like that's not the case any more. Sorry if that pulling on your server!

Anonyme a dit…

No problem at all -- I just thought the guy who took the picture deserved the credit.