When we were in Italy we were very fortunate to be given some Mazze di Tamburo (Parasol mushrooms). These were found in the local chestnut groves and although we had seen them growing, our knowledge of wild mushrooms is such that unless we are with someone who clearly knows what they are doing – we leave them well alone! We can buy our fungi in the local vegetable shop (these will almost always have been found by local people who actually know that what they are picking is safe!). These however were a gift from someone we trusted and this made them all the better!
This would be the second time we had these delightful mushrooms on this trip as our next door neighbour had very kindly cooked some for us. They had been done in breadcrumbs and for all the world looked (and tasted) like schnitzel. This time we had been advised to do these a little differently, simply frying in a seed oil – such as rapeseed – rather than olive oil, with a little garlic and a local wild mint which is very easy to find and has the mildest of flavours called Nepitalla (Calamintha nepeta) what a revelation! This is a mint that grows wild in Tuscany – and has a very delicate minty taste with undertones of basil and oregano. This is apparently the local favourite way to do these mushrooms in this part of Tuscany.
The flat mushrooms had their stalks removed and were washed in a little cold water to remove and impurities and placed on some kitchen towel to dry off a little. Our Mini BGE was set up in direct mode and all there was to do then was to heat the oil in our handleless pan, and drop in the finely chopped garlic and the Nepitalla. The parasol mushrooms were then added and allowed to fry. As soon as they took on a little colour they were flipped over and fried on the other side.
Once fully cooked they were removed from the pan with a fish slice and placed on some kitchen paper to drain any excess oil.The only real conundrum was which way up to serve them – but then if that was our biggest problem ………………..
They were then served simply with a little salt and pepper
Another seasonal special - fried Mazze di Tamburo (Parasol mushrooms)
Fried Mazze di Tamburo (Parasol mushrooms) with Nepitalla and garlic
- Mazze di Tamburo (Parasol mushrooms) 2 or more
- Rapeseed oil
- Chopped garlic
- Nepitalla (wild Tuscan mint)
- Salt and pepper
- Step 1 Remove the stalks from the flat mushrooms and wash in a little cold water to remove any impurities. Placed on some kitchen towel
- Step 2 Set up the Big Green Egg in direct mode and heat the oil in a pan.
- Step 3 When ready to cook add the chopped garlic, nepitella and the mushrooms
- Step 4 Once coloured they flip over to cook the other side.
- Step 5 When cooked place on kitchen roll to remove a little of the oil
- Step 6 serve with salt and pepper and the sautéed garlic and nepitella