As a boy, Dominique Filoni of Savona in Gulph Mills, outside Philadelphia, often spent Sundays foraging in the woods with his mother and uncle near his home in St. Tropez, France, for asparagus, leeks and mushrooms—anything enticing for the kitchen. His grandmother would create meals of rabbit with polenta, fresh cannelloni and mushroom sauces like the one here. Filoni (an F&W Best New Chef 2004) recalls crawling under bushes, hunting for orange carpets of chanterelles, but admits his uncle was the real mushroom hunter in the family. "He had the nose for mushrooms, and he knew where to go," Filoni says. "He would find porcini, black trumpets, even morels, though morels are not common in the south of France."
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2 pounds thick asparagus, peeled
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound chanterelle or oyster mushrooms, thickly sliced
3 medium shallots, minced
1 garlic clove, minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 cup chicken stock
1 cup heavy cream
1 tablespoon minced parsley
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
How to Make It
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the asparagus and cook until crisp-tender, about 5 minutes. Drain, rinse under cold water and pat dry.
In a large, deep skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the chanterelles and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally until golden and dry, 6 minutes. Add the shallots and garlic, season with salt and pepper and cook until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the wine and cook until nearly evaporated, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add the stock and cook until reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Add the cream and cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Season the sauce with salt and pepper and stir in the parsley; keep warm.
Melt the butter in a large skillet. Add the asparagus and cook over high heat, shaking the pan until heated through, about 2 minutes. Transfer the asparagus to plates and spoon the sauce on top.
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