If you're not yet acquainted with the work of Icelandic painter Thordis Adalsteinsdottir, you definitely should be. This quick-rising art star happens to be one of the nearest and dearest at Cafe Drake, but also hosts wonderful dinners herself. Recent memorable meals include a bright summer pasta of zucchini and lemon, a North American variation of an Icelandic classic dish featuring baked fish and potatoes in a mustard sauce, and a multi-course luncheon (pictures from the afternoon below). Visit her website to view her intriguing work (http://www.thordisnyc.blogspot.com) and see when she may be showing at a gallery or museum near you! In honor of many lovely meals shared with together, we present below an adaptation of an Adalsteinsdottir luncheon starter that is a favorite of ours.
WILD MUSHROOM CROSTINI
A perfect cocktail party food, as almost everyone likes mushrooms and certainly EVERYone likes a hot appetizer with a drink. Make the mushrooms ahead of time and re-heat and assemble crostini just before guests arrive. I once served these with an endive salad as a light luncheon entrée.
1 T. butter / 2 garlic cloves, minced / 1/3 lb. or so mushrooms, assorted varieties (washed and chopped) / ¼ cup white wine or vermouth / Salt and pepper /1 baguette, thinly sliced and toasted
- In a large skillet melt the butter over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and mushrooms and turn heat to high. Cook until all the liquid has evaporated from mushrooms, stirring constantly. This will only take a few minutes so be careful not to burn.
- Add the wine and reduce to a simmer until almost all liquid is cooked out. Season with salt and pepper and spread mushrooms on toasted bread slices. Serve hot.
Additional Suggestions: If you like the flavor of nutmeg (who doesn’t?) sprinkle a bit in during the final stage of cooking. Garnish with snipped chives or chopped hazelnuts. Also, a tiny dollop of sour cream adds a rich touch. Use a whole grain baguette if readily available; it’s both healthier and tastier I think.