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swirl and savor

Sauteed Oyster Mushrooms

Beth Ribblett

Trying to decided what I wanted to cook to accompany Kerry's chicken dish she prepared last week, I picked up a beautiful clump of oyster mushrooms at Whole Foods. Originally from Asia his delicate white mushroom is ideal for simple preparations that allow its sweet, woodsy flavor to come through. It is now cultivated around the world and is highly praised for its medicinal and pharmacological value due to its high content of statins which help to control cholesterol. So hopefully that help to balance out all of the butter and fat I used for this recipe...

We opened up a 2001 Poliziano Asinone Vino Nobile di Montepulciano to pair with the chicken dish, but it actually worked better with the mushrooms. The wine was fabulous, but it has hit its peak so we better drink that last bottle we've been saving soon!

1/2 lb. fresh oyster mushrooms
2 T. butter
1 T. olive oil
2 ounces pancetta, cut into small half inch pieces
2 T. Marsala
1/4 C. water
Salt and pepper to taste

-Separate the mushrooms by hand tearing each one away from the clump.
-Take a large saute pan and add the butter and oil over medium heat until the butter starts to foam.
-Add the pancetta and stir until browned.
-Now add the mushrooms, coat with the butter/oil and turn up the heat to medium high. Once it starts to sizzle, add the marsala and water and cook until mushrooms are softened but still have a bit of a crunch.
-Salt and pepper to taste and enjoy!