If you find yourself near one of the coastal state parks in Sonoma County in November, take a short walk into the woods, then stop and listen. If you’re lucky, amidst the crashing waves and wailing sea birds you might just be able to discern the sounds of wicker baskets brushing against pine trees or the soft whisper in Italian, as small group of local foragers, meticulously comb the woods for the prized porcine mushrooms growing wild in the fall. When I hunt for mushrooms I like to bring a lunch with me that compliments the experience, and there is nothing better than this Spanish inspired Porcini &Potato Torta. It is both hearty and flavorful, not to mention that the recipe is just as comfortable on a fine dining table as it is in the woods.
Extra Virgin Olive Oil (for sautéing) 2 tablespoons
Yellow Onions 2 each (fine chop)
Smoked Bacon or Pancetta 4 ounces
Potatoes 1 ½ pound
Fresh Porcini Mushrooms 1 pound
(1/4 ounce dried porcini,add 1 pound extra potatoes)
Spanish Pimmenton (Smoked Paprika) 2 teaspoons
Fresh Garlic 2 cloves
Whole Eggs 12 each
Sea Salt to taste
Fresh Cracked Black Pepper to taste
Cut potatoes into ½ inch dice and reserve in water until ready.
Chop bacon into small pieces
Slice porcini into small thin slices
Heat oil until pan is slightly smoking the add onions, garlic and bacon.
Cook until just brown, then add potatoes and paprika, cook until just crispy.
Remove from pan, add in beaten eggs, and pour the mixture into a greased woven-proof baking dish.
Cook in medium oven until the eggs are set and the top is golden brown.
Remove from oven and either eat warm or allow it to cool, this dish can also be un-molded onto a platter for a more authentic Spanish presentation.