2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon butter
1 pound cremini mushrooms, cleaned and thinly sliced
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
Salt, to taste
1/4 teaspoon ground white pepper
6 cups mixed baby greens (including baby arugula)
1 Walla Walla Sweet onion, peeled and sliced thin
Hazelnut Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
About 3/4 cup coarsely chopped, roasted and skinned hazelnuts
4 to 6 ounces extra-aged Gouda (shredded in wide, slender sheets using a vegetable peeler or wide side of a box grater)
Heat the oil and butter in a large saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and saute until they begin to release their juices. Add the thyme leaves and continue cooking until mushrooms become soft and golden. Season mushrooms to taste with the salt and white pepper, then remove mushrooms to a platter.
Arrange the greens on 6 salad plates. Divide the sliced onions and sauteed mushrooms among plates, arranging them on top of greens. Deglaze skillet with the vinaigrette, then drizzle it over onions, mushrooms and salad greens. Sprinkle each salad with a portion of the hazelnuts and then generous sprinklings of the cheese. Serve immediately.
Makes 6 servings.
HAZELNUT VINAIGRETTE: Whisk together 1/4 cup unseasoned rice vinegar, 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon finely minced shallot, 1 peeled and finely minced garlic clove and 2 teaspoons granulated sugar. Slowly whisk in 1/2 cup hazelnut oil (or extra-virgin olive oil).