Crimini Mushrooms al Ajillo with an Egg Fried in Olive Oil
There are tons of variations of dishes al ajillo, or “with a little garlic,” all over Spain. This is an extremely easy and tasty dish that can be served as a side or as a protein rich, energy packed breakfast.
If you want to try this for dinner or a tapas dish, omit the egg and pile these mushrooms, hot or cold, into little ceramic dishes, stick a toothpick in each, and you’re on your way to your own tapas party. I also love them tossed in a salad
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 pound small cremini mushrooms, whole,lightly wiped down with a damp cloth
- 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- 2 guindilla peppers, or 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 2 tablespoons Champagne or white wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley
- 4 fresh eggs, preferably free-range and organic
- 4 tablespoons olive oil
In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil overmedium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and roll
them around in the pan with a rubber spatula tobrown evenly on all sides. Once the mushrooms
are nice and seared, reduce the heat to mediumlow and add the garlic while continuing to stir.
Add the peppers or pepper flakes and sauté for 3 minutes, until the garlic starts to wilt, but not
brown. Once the garlic has softened in flavorand texture, add the vinegar and increase the
heat to medium high to glaze the mushrooms.
Pour in the white wine and braise the mushrooms until tender, 8–10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and finish with a scattering of chopped parsley.
In another medium sized sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium high heat until it slides nicely across the pan. Crack the eggs into a bowl and slip them into the pan, one at a time. The whites should bubble up and get crispy, in Spanish we call this puntillas, or “lace” because the whites (sort of) resemble the famous needle-point lacework of Spain. As the yolk starts to set, with a spoon, gently baste the egg with the olive oil, cooking the white all the way. I like my eggs with the yolk nice and runny and the whites all cooked. If you like your eggs a little more done, you can carefully flip them over for 30 seconds or so to just cook the yolks.
Distribute the mushrooms on four plates and top each plate with a fried egg. Finish with a sprinkle of coarse sea salt and enjoy!