Tapas for Two, or Four

Miss Picky Pants (known for the remainder of the post as MPP) is a grazer.  She is easily overwhelmed by large portions (with the exception of cake, of course), and loves to have just a bit of as many things as possible.  In a desperate attempt to have dinner out a few years ago, Mr. Little Sis and I took the twins to a Tapas joint here in our little burg.

Don’t know if you’ve ever walked 4 year old twins into a restaurant before, but I can tell you it’s the rare restaurant staff that greets this moment with true enthusiasm.  Weren’t they surprised to find out that as long as they kept the bread and little plates coming, MPP and her all cuisine loving brother would be just fine, thank you very much.  To be fair my little MPP, she comes by the small plate thing honestly.  I love having bits on the plate to choose from , tie together, nibble on, mop up with bread.  Yum. Tonight we had just such a plate.  If there had been sections dividing MPP’s food, everything would have been perfecto.  All of it was simple, hearty, and super yummy.  Perfect for these increasingly cool evenings.  A little preview of autumn’s heartier fare. The highlight of the meal, for me, was garlic mushrooms, a classic tapas favorite. The beauty of this dish is its simplicity and its versatility. Want it with rice – rock it out. Over quinoa? Keen. With pasta? Perfection. Garlic mushrooms, a foodie’s best friend.

Garlic Mushrooms – inspired by Perfect Vegetarian

  • 5 T olive oilIMG_0012
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped fine
  • 1 lb of mushrooms, I used crimini
  • salt, to taste
  • 3 T chopped parsley
  • 1 T fresh lemon juice
  • pepper, to taste

To prepare mushrooms, clean them as you prefer. Personally, I rinse with water and rub with my fingers. Some folks insist you can just rub them clean, without water. Others insist on a water bath.  Jury’s out as far as I’m concerned, but given that I’m the one who passes on the food recall warnings, I gotta use some water, but I don’t want those little beauties to get water logged.  So a rinse and a rub is how I roll. I then trim the stems to the length I prefer. I don’t find anything wrong with a little stem on a cooked mushroom, so I don’t take the whole thing.

IMG_0024 IMG_0027

For this dish larger mushrooms should be cut in half or even quarters. Warm the olive oil in the pan over medium heat.  Add the garlic and cook until fragrant (about 30 seconds).  Add mushrooms and saute with a little stirring until the mushrooms have soaked up all the olive oil (yes, they’ll take it all). Turn heat to low, add some salt to the mushrooms and continue to cook for another 5-10 minutes or until the mushrooms have released their liquid. Raise heat to medium-high.  Add parsley, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste. Cook for another minute or so, stirring a lot.  Remove from heat and serve with your other favorite small plates.  For us it was cauliflower steaks with peppers and tomatoes, fresh baked whole wheat bread (I’ve got a new one coming for you), and some lovely olives.   Fall is in the air, and now it’s in my belly. Delish.

IMG_0019 IMG_0029 IMG_0014

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23 responses

  1. I adore tapas (we even had our wedding luncheon at a tapas restaurant) and these mushrooms look delicious! I’ve been making patatas bravas (fried potatoes) like it’s my job and they make me super happy. Can’t wait to try these mushrooms!

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