Tarragon and mustard mushrooms on toast

  • Easy

This garlic mushroom recipe from London's Borough Market is an easy-midweek meal for a chilly autumn evening.

Tarragon and mustard mushrooms on toast

There are mushrooms for most seasons, but in early autumn the likes of chanterelles, girolles and trompettes de la mort come to the fore – plucked from the woods and brought to market by the box-load. Look, for example, at the ultra-seasonal mushrooms display at Fitz Fine Foods and Tartufaia.

Chestnut, mushroom and savoy cabbage stew

This simple celebration of them works equally well for breakfast, brunch, lunch or supper. Flavours like tarragon and mustard are a well-established match and shouldn’t overwhelm the ’shrooms, given how prized and pricey they can be. On which note, the recipe includes chestnut mushrooms to add bulk and an alternative texture. But feel free to go all out with only wild mushrooms; using only ceps (also known as porcini or penny bun), for example, would make a particularly decadent but rewarding toast topper.



serves 2

  • Wild mushrooms 150–200g, a mix of chanterelles, girolles, pieds de mouton and/or trompettes de la mort
  • Water 2 tablespoons
  • Full-fat creme fraiche 100g
  • fresh sourdough bread 2 thick slices
  • Cooking oil 2 tablespoons
  • Chestnut mushrooms 250g, quartered
  • Butter 40g
  • Garlic clove 1, large, finely sliced
  • Tarragon 6 sprigs, leaves picked and roughly chopped
  • Wholegrain mustard 2 teaspoons
  • juice of ¼ lemon
  • Extra virgin olive oil for drizzling


  • Step 1

    Brush any mud off the wild mushrooms with a damp cloth, cut away any woody bits at the base and, if necessary, tear any particularly large ones so they’re a similar size to the rest.

  • Step 2

    Add 2 tablespoons water to the crème fraiche and mix well. Toast the bread.

  • Step 3

    Heat the cooking oil in a large frying pan or wok over a high heat and wait until the oil is almost smoking hot. Add the chestnut mushrooms and fry them for 1 minute, stirring just once or twice, then add half the butter, which will froth immediately if the temperature is right, and cook for a further minute: the mushrooms should look shiny as they begin to release their juices and some edges should be taking on colour.

  • Step 4

    At this point add the wild mushrooms, the rest of the butter and the garlic, and lots of flaky sea salt and black pepper. Fry for another 60–90 seconds, then scrape in the crème fraîche and add the tarragon and mustard. Stir and allow to bubble for a final 30 seconds, remove from the heat and add the lemon juice – just enough to cut through the sauce, but not so much that you only taste citrus.

  • Step 5

    Drizzle the toast generously with olive oil and spoon the mushrooms over the top. Eat immediately.

Recipe from The Borough Market Cookbook by Ed Smith, published by Hodder & Stoughton, £25. Image by Issy Croker.

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