- 6 large portobello mushrooms, stems removed
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons of extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon anchovy paste
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crumbled
- Generous 4 cups trimmed arugula, washed and spun dry
- Juice of 1/2 small lemon
- Coarse sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 4-ounce chunk of Parmigiano-Reggiano for shaving
- Preheat a gas grill or prepare a fire in a charcoal grill.
- Place the portobellos on the grill and cook, turning two or three times, until slightly softened, 5 to 8 minutes. Transfer to a platter, arranging the mushrooms gill side up.
- In a small bowl, whisk together 1/4 cup of the olive oil, the anchovy paste, vinegar, and thyme. Spoon the mixture evenly over the portobellos and let stand for 30 minutes.
- In a large bowl, toss the arugula with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the lemon juice. Season with coarse salt and pepper.
- Divide the arugula among six plates and top each with a mushroom. Using a vegetable peeler, shave the Parmigiano over the salads. Serve immediately.
This was one of the first dishes I put on the menu at my restaurant Po a long time ago. You can vary it by using different greens, such as spicy young watercress, or other cheeses, including sheep's-milk cheese, semisoft or aged. The beauty of the dish lies in the seemingly incongruous marriage of anchovies and mushrooms: anchovies plus mushrooms equals steak. --Mario Batali