Mushrooms with thyme and onions

An original recipe by Rod Benson

I was browsing social media this morning when I saw a photograph of a plate of food posted by my friend Berni. Fried mushrooms! Sour cream! Thyme! BACON!!! What’s not to like? So I created this recipe to make it my own.

    • Serves 4
    • Preparation time: 5 minutes
    • Cooking time: 25 minutes


    • 30ml olive oil
    • 60g butter
    • 1 small brown onion
    • several generous sprigs of fresh thyme (reserving some tips for garnish)
    • 400g button mushrooms
    • 200g Swiss brown mushrooms
    • zest of half a lemon
    • 30ml fresh lemon juice
    • pinch smoked paprika (or to taste)
    • black pepper
    • sea salt
    • 2 rashers rindless bacon
    • 150ml sour cream
    • 1 tbsp brandy (optional)
    • Parmesan (shaved or grated), to garnish
    • thyme sprigs, to garnish


Add oil and butter to a large frying pan on medium heat. Finely chop the onion and add to pan, stirring to coat the onion. Add the thyme sprigs whole and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion is translucent but not browning. You can pick the thyme leaves from the stems, but I find that it’s just as easy to cook them whole and remove the stems before serving.

Slice the mushrooms and add to the pan, stirring gently. Add the zest, juice, paprika, pepper and salt and stir to combine. Allow the mushrooms to cook down, still on medium heat, until the mushrooms are very soft but there is still liquid in the pan. This may take a few minutes.

Meanwhile, finely dice the bacon and dry-fry in a small pan until dark and crispy. Take care not to over-cook. I added a single drop of liquid smoke (from a bottle) and stirred it in after I took the pan off the heat, but that’s optional. Set aside.

Add the brandy and sour cream to the mushrooms and gently stir to combine. Cook, stirring, for 1-2 minutes, adjusting seasoning to taste. You want to balance the umami of the mushrooms with the lemon and salt.

Serve in a bowl, add the Parmesan and diced bacon, and garnish with thyme sprigs and freshly ground black pepper.


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