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Creamy tarragon and pancetta mushrooms on toasted brioche with watercress

Mushrooms with tarragon and cream is a heavenly combination, so why not fry up a plateful with Simon Rimmer's tasty lunch or supper recipe

Creamy tarragon and pancetta mushrooms on toast
Creamy tarragon and pancetta mushrooms on toast

Preparation time

10 minutes

Cooking time

15 minutes




  • 140g white button mushrooms
  • 60g chestnut mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
  • 1 clove of garlic crushed
  • 2 slices of toasted brioche
  • Small bunch of watercress
  • 2 tbsp crème fraiche
  • 1 knob of butter
  • Splash of sunflower oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • 70g cubed pancetta (optional)


TV chef, Simon Rimmer says: "Mushrooms should be fried in a very hot pan to seal in moisture and create a lovely crispy texture. Make sure your pan is almost smoking hot before adding the mushrooms to it.

"To ensure you’re getting a really good temperature for frying mushrooms, it’s essential to have the right kind of pan. A good quality, heavy-based pan is best for conducting heat and keeping your pan hotter for longer."

  • Make sure the mushrooms are clean by gently brushing any dirt off with a clean, damp cloth or soft brush. Chop the mushrooms into quarters
  • Using a non-stick frying pan, heat the butter and sunflower oil over a high heat. Make sure the pan is almost smoking hot before adding in the mushrooms.
  • Cook for around 3 minutes before adding in the crushed garlic and - slightly reducing the temperature - continue cooking for a further 2 minutes. Stir in the crème fraiche, tarragon and season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • While the mushrooms are cooking, toast the brioche on both sides under a hot grill. If serving with pancetta heat a second non-stick pan and crisp the pancetta using a splash of sunflower oil.
  • To finish, top each slice of brioche with some of the watercress and half of the mushrooms. If using pancetta, sprinkle each with the pancetta.


The opinions expressed are those of the author and are not held by Saga unless specifically stated. The material is for general information only and does not constitute investment, tax, legal, medical or other form of advice. You should not rely on this information to make (or refrain from making) any decisions. Always obtain independent, professional advice for your own particular situation.