Mushroom & Gruyere Bruschetta

Mushroom & Gruyere Bruschetta is the kind of quick and easy appetizer you can throw together on the spur of the moment.

Light dinner or substantial appetizer, it’s up to you.  During the summer they’re one and the same to us.  This one couldn’t be simpler, and I’ve got a bonus tip for cooking those mushrooms — you won’t believe the flavor you will get from them when you cook them this way.

This is patterned on classic French elements: a baguette, mushrooms, nutty Gruyere , fresh thyme, sherry, and a touch of garlic. You can use any kind of mushrooms and any kind of cheese, but remember that white button mushrooms don’t have as much flavor as other varieties.  I used cremini, which are young portobellos.  There are lots of great cheeses that would be delicious here, but Gruyere and mushrooms have a special affinity for each other.

Mushroom & Gruyere Bruschetta


  • 1 small loaf ciabatta bread or a crusty baguette
  • 1 clove garlic, halved
  • 1 pint cremini mushrooms
  • 1/4 pound Gruyere cheese, grated (a generous cup)
  • 1 Tbsp Sherry (or Marsala)
  • pinch of salt, if needed
  • fresh thyme leaves (about 2 Tbsp, plus more for garnish)
  • Fresh cracked black pepper
  • garnish
  • fresh thyme leaves


  • Cut the bread in half lengthwise, so you have a large cut surface. You will not need the whole loaf, I used about a 6 inch by 6 inch piece of ciabatta. Grill the bread, cut side down, on a hot grill until it starts to get nice char marks. Rub the cut side of the garlic across the bread while it is still hot. Set aside.
  • Dust off the mushrooms with a clean dish cloth. Trim off the tips of the stems, and then thickly slice them.
  • Heat a cast iron or saute pan on medium high, and add the mushrooms and thyme leaves. Dry saute the mushrooms, stirring often so they won't stick to the pan, until they release their moisture and are softened. This will only take a couple of minutes.

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