Champiñones al Ajillo is a Spanish tapas dish of mushrooms sautéed with garlic slices in an olive oil sherry sauce. Serve them as an appetizer or with a variety of other small plates. Have a baguette or other crusty bread nearby to sop up the remaining sauce.
I used Spartan Oil to coat these mushrooms. Spartan Oil has brought together a group of bloggers this week for their first event, the #EVOOChallenge! I will be featuring recipes highlighting olive oil every day this week. The company was founded by first generation Greek-American, Pericles Konstas, to offer the highest quality extra virgin olive oil to its consumers. The oil has been produced from the family’s ancient olive trees in Sparta, Greece (Lakonia region) for at least twelve generations. The olives are harvested by hand, pressed mechanically within 24 hours of harvest, and the resulting oil is not filtered to preserve the full flavor and nutritional benefits. The olive oil is stored in all natural, non-reactive stoneware bottles to keep the oil at a consistent temperature and prevent light transmission. Using a high quality, flavorful extra virgin olive oil definitely has an impact on the final result of the dish. Check out the hashtag #EVOOChallenge on social media for other great recipes using Olive Oil.
Be careful after you mix in the garlic slices. Make sure the sherry is on stand-by to immediately pour in once the garlic is just fragrant and lightly golden.
If some of the mushrooms are a lot larger than the others, halve or quarter them to make the size more even. I used button mushrooms, but a wild mushroom mixture would also work well.
To give this dish a bit of a kick, you can add a pinch or so of red chili flakes when you mix in the garlic and thyme.
Disclaimer: I was given a bottle and refill pouch of Spartan Oil to prepare this recipe. All comments and opinions are my own.
Champiñones al Ajillo (Spanish Mushrooms with Garlic)
Adapted from Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 pound button mushrooms, cleaned and stems removed
5 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
1 sprig fresh thyme, about 1/3 teaspoon leaves
1/4 cup Spanish sherry
Salt and pepper to taste
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley for garnish
In a large flat pan, drizzle 6 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat.
Once thoroughly heated, add the mushrooms in a single layer. Allow to cook until browned on the bottom, about 1 minute. Gently shake the pan or use a wooden spoon to flip the mushrooms to the other side. Continue to cook, shaking as needed, until all sides of the mushrooms are browned.
Add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil if the pan is too dry. Stir in garlic and thyme leaves and cook until just fragrant and lightly golden, about 30 seconds.
Mix in the sherry and cook until it mostly evaporates and reduces, about 1 minute. Season with salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately topped with parsley.