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dedicated to the
discussion & revival
of British foodways.

NO.53
SUMMER2017

Asparagus & mushrooms with Worcestershire on toast.

Another recipe from Jamie Oliver’s Great Britain, and another good one. If it seems to advocate an excess of Worcestershire, fear not: The assertive flavors marry amicably to create something sublime. Good as the only accompaniment you need for a seared duck breast, steak or chop, or for a nicely balanced lunch on its own. Four servings either way.


  • asparagus.jpg1 Tablespoon olive oil
  • a big shallot, minced
  • 1 lb asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1 inch logs
  • about 2 cups mushrooms, cut into pieces about the same size as the asparagus
  • a sprinkle of coarse salt (like Maldon)
  • 3 Tablespoons chopped parsley
  • ½ cup Worcestershire
  • 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
  • pepper
  • 4 slices of toast

  1. Place a heavy skillet on high heat: Let it become quite hot. Add the olive oil, stir in the shallot and then toss the asparagus and mushrooms into the pan with a hint of salt.
  2. Fry the vegetables, tossing the pan so they color but do not scorch, for about 4 minutes.
  3. Scatter 2 Tablespoons of the parsley overall and stir the Worcestershire into the pan: Follow that with the butter.
  4. Turn off the heat but leave the skillet on the burner to melt the butter and reduce the sauce, shaking but not stirring the pan, for about 30 seconds.
  5. Season with pepper and load up the toast with the mixture, topping it with the remaining parsley.

 

Notes:

-Like just about everyone else, Oliver likes to cook mushrooms with garlic, four minced cloves in his version. We find it too assertive, even acrid, for fungus so specify the shallot instead.

-Also like just about everyone else, Oliver always specifies flat leaf over curly parsley. We, however, have begun using more and more of the unfashionably kinky stuff. It has a contrasting texture and bright flavor that we have come to prize.

-If you encounter someone who thinks that asparagus may be unappealing, this dish would be an excellent initiation.