Cheesy Mushroom Crostini on Boston Lettuce

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My CSA box is LOADED with salad greens in June. I wanted – and NEEDED- to make a dinner salad. This is a rich, main course salad adapted from foodtv.com, contributed by Stewart, Tabori, and Chang. It calls for my favorite types of lettuce, Boston or Butter lettuce, which are so tender and delicate. Camembert was not available (this dish is great with it), so I substituted Coulommiers, another creamy soft-ripened cheese with sweet cream butter & mushroom notes. I dressed it with a mustard vinaigrette but have made a truffle vinaigrette in the past- both options are described below. To warm up this dish for our cold and rainy weather I paired it with a cup of Egyptian Red Lentil Soup. Lovely.

Serves: 3-4 as a main course

For the truffle vinaigrette dressing:

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or champagne vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon truffle oil (white or black)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper

For the mustard vinaigrette dressing:

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sherry vinegar or red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper

For the crostini:

  • 1 regular sourdough baguette, about 3 inches in diameter, cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices (4 to 6 per person)
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil for brushing the bread or an olive oil mister
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 portobello mushrooms (about 3/4 pound total), stems removed, caps sliced 1/4 inch thick, then cut crosswise into quarters
  • 1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, stems removed, caps sliced 1/4 inch thick, then cut crosswise into thirds
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 3 ounces Camembert cheese, at room temperature (or use brie or another soft-ripened cheese such as Coulommiers)

For the salad:

  • 1/2 large head of green Boston lettuce, or 1 head of butter lettuce, washed and torn into large pieces
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, finely chopped (I use an egg slicer)
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish, optional

Make the dressing:

  1. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, oil(s), and salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

Make the crostini:

  1. Preheat the broiler.
  2. Using an olive oil mister, spray the cut sides of the baguette slices with olive oil and place under the broiler just until the bread is toasted on both sides, about 1-2 minutes per side. Set aside.
  3. In a medium saucepan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and the butter over medium heat. Add the mushrooms and saute until they are tender and the juices, if any, have cooked away. If the mushrooms seem dry, add a few drops of chicken stock or water and continue to cook until they’re nice and tender and any remaining liquid has boiled away. (You want the mushrooms to be dry, almost crisp on the outside.) Add salt and a generous amount of pepper, and set aside.
  4. Spread or spoon about 1 1/2 teaspoons of cheese on each slice of toast. Broil for approximately 1 minute, or until the cheese has melted (or maybe even disappeared).

Assemble:

  1. Reheat the mushrooms if they have cooled, or, if you prefer, keep them at room temperature.
  2. Toss the lettuce and eggs with the dressing. Distribute on individual salad plates. Place four to six crostini on each plate, and top each one with about 1 tablespoon of the mushrooms. Sprinkle with a little parsley, if desired, and serve.
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About Josette@thebrookcook

I live in Stony Brook, New York on Long Island. I love garlic and baking. My hobby (and love) is to try new recipes. My favorite recipe resources include The New York Times, Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, and Martha Stewart Living. Enjoy!

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