Mushroom, Tomato and Eschalot Salsa
'A solitary meal should engender a mood of tranquil satisfaction'.
- David Jones, The Bachelor's Dinner.
Peter often travels across Australia with his work, and when he is away I draw on my repertoire of bachelor menus. When I'm home alone, I treat myself and cook meals with ingredients that my man is not so fond of. Foodstuffs such as mustard, salsa verde, mayonnaise, red wine and Balsamic vinegar are favourites as far as my taste buds are concerned, but are not so agreeable to Peter's palate. He is not terribly fussed on chopped herbs either.
My list of bachelor meals includes grilled steak with a simple salad with Balsamic vinegar and a dollop of great-tasting mustard, such as my favourite Honeycup. The recipe I am sharing with you here was inspired by a simple dish that a lovely friend prepared for me from The Tony Ferguson Cookbook. I have since adapted it to suit my tastes and adopted it as a regular dinner for one. You can serve this salsa over a grilled steak or alongside chicken, or simply with artisan bread, mopping up all the delicious juices. As with all cooking, use the freshest quality ingredients for this dish.
MUSHROOM, TOMATO AND ESCHALOT SALSA
2 large eschalots, peeled and sliced
1 large tomato, diced
3-4 large mushrooms, halved and sliced
1/3 cup flat leafed parsley, chopped
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
1/2-1 tablespoon red wine vinegar, to taste
1-2 tablespoons EVOO*, to taste
sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper, to taste
steak or bread, optional, your choice
Heat a little oil in a frypan and toss in the sliced eschalots, stir and fry briefly, then add the chopped tomatoes. Fry briefly, then add the mushrooms. Lower the heat and cook, gently stirring, until the vegetables are tender. (Meanwhile, cook your steak, if you are serving the salsa over a steak).
Spoon the salsa mixture into a bowl and add the parsley, basil, EVOO, red wine vinegar, sea salt and pepper. Mix gently to combine. Serve over a steak or with crusty artisan bread.
*Peter and I are very much enjoying the exquisite flavour of Cobram Estate's single origin 2011 Ultra-Premium Picual, which took home the gold medal for the 'medium' intensity category at The Olive Japan 2012 International Extra Virgin Olive Oil Competition recently. Cobram's single origin 2011 Ultra-Premium Hojiblanca earned a gold medal in the 'delicate' intensity category. Congratulations are in order!
The process in pictures...
Dinner for one...
What dishes make up your bachelor's repertoire? Do you cook for one, or do you prefer to dine out?
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NB: I use Australian standard measuring cups and spoons in my recipes.