Chestnut mushrooms are also known as Velvet Pioppino or Black Poplar - with their long, slender stem and a chestnut cap that is velvet-like in appearance, they are quite visually appealing.
It's said that it was this family of mushroom that were first cultivated by the Romans so I think it's appropriate that my dish is an Italian standard - Funghi Trifolati.
You can really use any type of mushroom - be it cultivated or wild - a single variety or a mix - but the base of the dish remains the same. A little garlic and butter and fresh parsley to finish.
300 grams Chestnut mushrooms, cleaned and larger ones sliced in half lenghtways
1 garlic clove, finely sliced
sea salt and white pepper
stock or water
finely chopped parsley
Add a little oil and a good knob of butter to a skillet and place on a medium-low heat. When the butter has started to melt, add the garlic and sauté gently so that it starts to release its flavour. Add the prepared mushrooms and increase the heat slightly so that they cook sauté rather than stew. This isn't that much of an issue as the chestnut mushrooms have a lower water content that other varieties. Carefully turn the mushrooms so they colour evenly.
Drizzle in a little water or stock to deglaze the pan - increase the heat so it evaporates - the whole process shouldn't take more than a couple of minutes. You can finish off with another little knob of butter and as soon as its melted, take the pan off the heat and toss in the chopped parsley. Season with a little sea salt and white pepper and it's ready to serve.