Don’t be fooled by the simplicity of this recipe. At the foundation of this earthy, aromatic flavorful dish are roasted mushrooms and fresh thyme. These flavors pair very well with the 2010 Russian River Valley Chardonnay. Its subtle citrus notes with hints of spice and toast provide a lovely complement for this earthy piece of toast…with mushrooms, cheese and potatoes, of course. Try to find an imported Fontina from Valle d’ Aosta, its mild grass flavors and nutty tones are perfect with this bruschetta.
- 3 Tbsp. plus ¼ C. vegetable oil
- 1 C. fingerling potatoes, diced into rounds ½ -inch thick
- 8 slices Italian-style bread (Pugliese or Ciabatta)
- 2 lbs. mixed mushrooms, sliced and torn if necessary
- ½ stick of butter, cut into 4 pieces
- ¼ C. shallots, minced
- ¼ C. thyme, chopped
- 3 Tbsp. parsley, chopped
- 10 oz. fontina, cut into ¼ -inch thick slices
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
Preheat oven to 350º. Preheat grill or grill pan.
Toss the potatoes with 3 Tbsp. of oil. Season with salt and pepper and pour onto a sheet pan. Roast potatoes in the oven for approximately 20 to 25 minutes or until lightly browned.
Lightly brush the slices of bread with oil and season with salt. Grill over a hot grill or in a grill pan until bread has grill marks on it and tastes slightly smoky. Remove the toasted bread slices and place on a sheet pan. Divide the slices of cheese evenly and place on the bread.
Set a colander on a paper towel lined plate or sheet pan (the paper towels will help to absorb the oil when the mushrooms are drained).
Place a medium sized sauté pan over medium to high heat. Add enough of the oil to coat the entire bottom of the pan. This may seem like a lot of oil, but it is necessary to help roast the mushrooms evenly. Place enough mushrooms in the pan to cover the bottom only. Make sure not to crowd the pan or the temperature of the pan will drop. Sprinkle mushrooms with salt and allow them to cook for approximately 1 minute. Observe mushrooms, if they look like they are beginning to take on color, stir the pan and repeat the process of allowing the mushrooms to lay in the pan with minimal movement.
Once they appear to have softened and caramelized a bit, push them to the front of the pan and add the first piece of butter. Tilt the pan back so all the oil and butter stays on the empty side of the pan.
As the butter and oil accumulates in the back of the pan, spoon in a tablespoon of the shallots and thyme. Allow the shallots to cook and color around the edges. Once you see this, lay the pan flat again and mix with the mushrooms. Season with salt and pour mushrooms into colander. Allow to drain and repeat process until all mushrooms have been cooked this way.
Once potatoes are finished cooking, pour them into the colander with the mushrooms. Mix and season with parsley.
To serve: Place the bread in the oven until the cheese starts to melt. Remove from oven and top with mushroom mixture. Serve immediately.