King oyster mushroom, blue cheese, cherry vinegar, chocolate, truffle

This king oyster mushroom recipe from Matt Gillan features some wonderfully delicate touches, partnering the unusual flavours of oyster mushroom, cherry vinegar, dark chocolate and punchy Fourme d'Ambert blue cheese to create a terrifically balanced dish. There are a number of components, and some very elaborate ingredients, but each individual part is very achievable.

First published in 2015
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King oyster mushrooms

Blue cheese crumble

Cherry vinegar gel

Pickled mushrooms

Chocolate oil


  • Blender
  • Squeezy bottle


Preheat the oven to 180˚C/gas mark 4
To prepare the blue cheese crumble, combine the Fourme d’Ambert cheese, flour, butter and salt in a bowl. Use your fingertips to gently rub the ingredients together to form a crumble-like texture
Spread out evenly on a lined baking tray and bake in the oven for 10 minutes. After this time, remove from the oven and use a whisk to break up the mix. Return to the oven, checking at 5 minute intervals until the crumble mix is golden and crunchy
Remove from the oven, allow to cool and break up again into an even crumble. Store in an airtight container until required
For the cherry vinegar gel, combine the vinegar, water and agar in a small saucepan and bring to the boil, whisking to combine. Once boiling, remove from the heat and pour into a tray lined with cling film. Refrigerate until set
Once set, roughly break up the gel and transfer to a blender. Blitz to form a gel and store in a squeezy bottle until required
For the pickled mushrooms, remove the base from the bunch of Hon Shimeji mushrooms and cut off a little of the stalk to separate out the mushrooms into individual caps
To prepare the vinaigrette for the mushrooms, whisk together the vinegar, oil and a pinch of salt
  • 50g of white wine vinegar
  • 125g of sunflower oil
  • salt
Place a pan over a high heat and add a dash of sunflower oil. Add the mushrooms, sauté for 1 minute, then remove from the heat and add 100ml of the vinaigrette. Toss to coat the mushrooms and leave to pickle in the pan until required
For the chocolate oil, whisk the oil and cocoa powder into the melted chocolate until smooth and combined. Store at room temperature until required
To prepare the king oyster mushrooms, cut a small section from the base of each and slice each mushroom in half lengthways
Add a dash of oil to a pan and place over a medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the mushroom to the pan, cut-side down, and sear until golden. Turn and repeat to achieve the same effect on the opposite side
  • sunflower oil
Season with a little salt, reduce the heat and add a knob of butter. Spoon the butter over the mushroom to baste, then add a small dash of water to create a glaze
While still warm, place half a mushroom onto each plate, followed by the crumble, cherry vinegar gel and pickled Hon Shimeji mushrooms. Add small pieces of the Fourme d’Ambert cheese, shaved truffle and baby watercress, then finish with a few drops of the chocolate oil. Serve immediately
First published in 2015
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A protégé of Daniel Clifford, Gordon Ramsay and John Campbell, Matt Gillan is well versed in the hallmarks of high-end cuisine, yet he retains a dazzling streak of originality.

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