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School of tapas: Mushroom escabeche

>> Saturday, June 11, 2011

Champis escabeche 2

Escabeche is an ancient cooking and preserving method which originates during the Muslim rule of Spain in the Middle Ages. In Spain it usually consists in cooking the food in a mixture of vinegar, white wine and olive oil, seasoned with bay leaves and black pepper, among other spices, and most of the times accompanied by some vegetables like carrots and onion. This method, used for fish and meat alike, easy and versatile as it can get, allows for the food to last at least a couple of weeks in the fridge. What’s more, it is preferred to wait a couple of days before eating it, to allow for the flavors to fully develop. The finished dish is usually served at ambient temperature. Ingredients cooked in this way can be canned as well and kept for months after sterilization. I am a big fan of escabeches, as I enjoy those dishes that can be prepared in large amounts to slowly use them up along several days. The original recipe for this mushroom escabeche tapa is a signature recipe by the recently deceased 3-star Michelin Spanish chef Santi Santamaría.

This is a recipe that is easy and quick to make, very versatile as it is good not only as a tapa but also as a side dish and even in a salad on top of some greens, who could ask for more?

Champis escabeche 3

Champis escabeche 4

Mushroom escabeche, adapted from Santi Santamaría

  • 1lb (500g) mushrooms
  • 4 shallots
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 4/5 cup (200ml) Sherry vinegar
  • 4/5 cup (200ml) good white wine
  • 3/5 cup (150ml) water
  • 2 2/5 cups (600ml) virgin olive oil
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp black peppercorns
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 pinch rosemary
Champis escabeche 1
  1. Thoroughly clean the mushrooms, cut off their feet. Wash in a colander, rinse and slice. Set aside.
  2. Finely chop the shallots and sauté in a heavy pot in 4 tbsp of the virgin olive oil until translucent.
  3. Add the vinegar and reduce the liquid by half, until the shallots begin to brown and caramelize (10-15 minutes).
  4. Add the white wine and the water, and again reduce by half (another 8-10 minutes).
  5. Add the sliced mushrooms, the whole peeled cloves of garlic, the seasonings and remaining oil, and cook everything together 25 minutes.
  6. Check the seasoning and add more salt if needed. Let cool the escabeche and keep it in the refrigerator for three days before eating, for the flavors to meld.
Champis escabeche 5

In my humble opinion, this escabeche has a master touch: the caramelized shallots. The mixture of caramel flavor with the taste of Sherry vinegar gives this escabeche a distinctly special character. Simply scrumptious. And if you wonder if you can use another type of vinegar I say yes, the result will be good too, but will not have that much character, because good quality Sherry vinegar has a very special bouquet. By the way, Sherry vinegar is one of the three vinegars protected by a designation of origin status in the European Union, the other two being Condado de Huelva vinegar, also Spanish, and the ubiquitous Italian Balsamic of Modena. I hope I have piqued your interest in this very delicious vinegar…

19 comentarios:

Belinda @zomppa June 11, 2011 at 7:37 PM  

BOY that looks lovely!!

Mari June 11, 2011 at 8:19 PM  

I am sure it tastes exactly the same as delicious as it looks with that touch of rosemary, wine and garlic. Lovely photo Miriam :)

Paprika&Paprika June 11, 2011 at 9:28 PM  

If i understand well this delicious
mushrooms Escabeche can be canned ?
I'll try it!!

bellini June 12, 2011 at 12:03 AM  

Sherry vinegar sounds like something I should have in my cupboards Miriam.

Pretend Chef June 12, 2011 at 2:05 PM  

This sounds amazing and looks every bit so. Yummy!

Claudie June 13, 2011 at 5:17 PM  

I really like your recipe and your series of posts on tapas! It's also great to hear a bit about the history, I think it's great you are doing that :)

foodblogandthedog June 14, 2011 at 11:41 AM  

I've only ever seen fish escabeches before. I am really excited to try this veggie version and am also a lover of Jerez vinegar (with virgin oil on tomatoes with garlic)it's my favourite thing!!

Anonymous June 14, 2011 at 5:52 PM  

I am in the process of making this Escabeche. Looks like it will be delicious. I am wondering about leaving the garlic in the oil with the mushrooms. I have always understood that there is a risk of Botulism when garlic cloves are stored in oil. What os your experience?

itookmyprozac June 14, 2011 at 9:45 PM  

This is just lovely and the pictures are stunning. Jamaicans do this with fish and and call it Escoviche, now I know where they got that word

purabi naha June 15, 2011 at 7:41 AM  

I am new to Escabeche. I think it will taste delicious!! What an amazing photography. Do visit my blog on curries. Following you gladly!

Marla June 16, 2011 at 1:04 PM  

Gorgeous mushrooms! Cookin' Canuck and I would love if you linked up this recipe & any 2 other side dishes in this weeks Get Grillin' event posted on both of our blogs.

Miriam June 16, 2011 at 1:25 PM  

Belinda, Mari, Paprika: thanks!
Val: mmmm, a must try!
PC, Claudie: thanks!
FB: ;)
Helen: I must admit I never heard of garlic relating to any botulism problem. In Spain lots of canned escabeches have garlic in them and I never heard of that. For your peace of mind, I always leave the garlic in my escabeches and I'm still alive. Enjoy your escabeche!
ITMP: yes, the origin is Spanish...
Purabi Naha: thanks!
Marla: I will check that, thanks!

Trix June 16, 2011 at 8:46 PM  

This was an excellent culinary lesson, thank you! This would as you say make an excellent meal with salad and wine - there is an excellent mushroom vendor at my farmers market, I will have to get the supplies for this next weekend. I love this tapas series!!

Kevin June 18, 2011 at 3:39 PM  

That is a tasty looking way of enjoying some mushrooms!

Maria June 22, 2011 at 8:54 AM  

Love mushrooms and love the flavours you've combined them with! This sounds superb!

Xiaolu @ 6 Bittersweets June 23, 2011 at 2:03 PM  

Wow that looks really fantastic -- I love mushrooms of all kinds.

bakingdevils June 27, 2011 at 6:28 PM  

I love mushrooms and this would be tapas and glad I came to your blog...have lots to learn...


vanzare auto June 29, 2011 at 5:15 PM  

Hmm what a great recipe, it looks so good and i`m sure it is delicious, so i will give it a try. Thanks a lot for sharing.

Borislava@sharemykitchen July 9, 2011 at 8:56 PM  

I love your photos! With the story and the images the dish seems incredibly delicious. I'll definitely try it soon! Thanks


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