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Perfect Side: Roasted Mushrooms

I've honestly never been a huge mushroom fan, and I'm not sure I could ever put a finger on it until now – though you might not have been able to tell from this mushroom risotto recipe (which is also a great dish for fall). It all boils down to the fact I've never had mushrooms roasted in this manner.

Over the summer I had the opportunity to attend an event in Richmond, Virg., held at C'est le Vin, a funky little tapas joint, wine bar and art space close to my home. Chef Carly Herring fixed these mushrooms as one of the courses, and I have not been able to get enough since. I rarely (like, never) "ask the chef" for a recipe, but I had to know how to do this — as simple as this recipe may seem. The only additional note given from Carly was to read the whole recipe before beginning, and in the first step only use 2 tablespoons of olive oil, reserving the other 1/4 cup for the last step.

Ingredients:

• 1 lb wild mushrooms, brushed clean (mine were store-bought, and I used 8 ounces each of baby bellas, button, and I tossed in a few shiitake)

• 1 tsp kosher salt

• 1 tsp ground black pepper

• 2 Tbsp fresh garlic, minced

• 2 Tbsp olive oil

• ¼ cup olive oil

Directions:

Preheat the oven and a sheet pan (cookie sheet) to 400 degrees. Trim the stems of the mushrooms and quarter*. Toss with the salt, pepper, garlic, and first measure of oil (2 Tbsp).

* Shortcut alert: With the exception of the shiitake, I bought my mushrooms already sliced and did not quarter them.

Spread the mushrooms evenly across the pan. Roast for 10 minutes, stir, then rotate the pan. Continue roasting, checking frequently, until the pan is dry (Three 10-minute rotations to achieve the look above). Remove and cool to room temperature. Refrigerate until ready to use.

To reheat the mushrooms, toss with the second measure of oil and heat slowly on the stove-top until the mushrooms are all sizzling around the edges. Serve, oil and all. Crusty bread may be added for sopping.

This is another one of those dishes you can make early in the day and begin the last step just before guests arrive to really get that aroma going throughout the house. This recipe is sure to please any mushroom lover or someone who may be on the fence. A wine to pair with mushrooms, you may ask?  An earthy mushroom requires an earthy wine. Think Pinot Noir.