This salad is a perfect late-summer meal, for a light lunch or a starter. My pickled girolles had been sitting in the fridge waiting for their moment to shine, and this was the perfect opportunity. I added some sauteed girolles with persillade to give a savoury contrast to the vinegary tang of the pickled ones. Along with some wilted greens, crisp baby gem hearts and some shallot rings, it was a fine combination.
I used wilted chard as a base; I spread out a couple of the large green leaves on the plate to create a vibrant platform for the rest of the salad. You can use any greens you like however – spinach, kale, or whatever you can get. The heart of the baby gem lettuce is an important part of this dish as it provides texture. Get the freshest, crunchiest hearts you can find.
- 10 pickled girolles, mixed sizes
- 2 small handuls fresh girolles
- 1 small clove garlic
- 1 handful parsley, flat-leaf or curly
- a few leaves from the heart of a baby gem lettuce
- 1 small shallot, peeled and cut into rings
- 1 handful chard leaves, or other green leaf
- sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper
- extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon unsalted butter
Cut each of the pickled girolles in half, lightly sprinkle them with sea salt and set aside. Make the persillade by finely chopping the garlic and parsley, then mix together. Set aside.
Place a saute pan over a medium heat and add 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil. When the oil is hot, in about 30 seconds, add the chard (or whatever green leaf you're using) and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 2 minutes or until the greens are wilted. Remove from the pan, squeeze out the excess liquid with the back of a spoon, and set aside.
In another saute pan, heat 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil and add the fresh girolles along with a pinch of salt. Stir-and-fry for about 1 minute, then add the butter and persillade. Continue cooking for 30 seconds, then add a splash of water. Cover with a lid or some tin foil, and continue cooking for around 2 minutes, or until the mushrooms are tender. Remove the girolles from the pan and set aside. If there is some leftover liquid in the pan, boil it until it has thickened a bit, which you will use as a dressing for the salad.
Construct the salad with the wilted greens as a base, then arange the pickled girolles, sauteed girolles and baby gem leaves nicely on top. For the dressing: add some of the pickling vinegar and olive oil to the cooking liquid from the pan, and drizzle over top. Eat immediately.