Sauteed Mushrooms

Makes 6 Servings with Polenta or Pasta
When I learned this technique, I was always careful care to wipe off, not wash, mushrooms because I wanted them very dry for a quick saute in which the outside is brown and the moisture remains inside. Conversely, this recipe directs to wash in water and cover at the outset, drawing out the moisture initially and letting it brown in the final stages. The texture is different and the flavor is very deep. Serve this over polenta or steak or folded into risotto. It also forms the base for an excellent pasta sauce by simply adding a dash of white wine, 1/4 cup of cream and 3 tablespoons of grated cheese.


  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh mushrooms
  • 1/2 lemon
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons coarse salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley


  1. Submerge the mushrooms in cold water, swish around to wash thoroughly, and drain. Trim the ends, slice and place in a large bowl. Squeeze the juice of the lemon half over the mushrooms and toss.
  2. Put the garlic in a large pan and pour in the olive oil. Heat over medium-high heat until the garlic begins to sizzle but not brown, about 30 seconds. Add the mushrooms, stir, and cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes.
  3. Remove the lid, add the salt and pepper, and cook, stirring, until all moisture is evaporated and the mushrooms begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Stir in the parsley and serve.
cook's note
If you're in the mood for pasta, use these mushrooms as a base for sauce; add a splash of white wine, 1/4 cup of cream, and 3 tablespoons of grated cheese.
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