• Paul West's mushroom cheese toastie (Benito Martin)Source: Benito Martin

There’s nothing I enjoy more on a cold winter’s day than a steaming hot toastie, laden with butter and cheese.






Skill level

Average: 4 (70 votes)

I often get asked what my favourite thing to cook is or, heaven forbid, if I found myself on deathrow, what my last meal would be. After much head scratching and chin stroking the answer always comes back to the humble toastie. This recipe is my go-to; if you’re feeling super luxurious, you could even shave truffles over the mushrooms before toasting.


  • 11/2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 250 g king brown mushrooms (about 3), thinly sliced into rounds
  • 100 g unsalted butter
  • 1 French shallot, finely diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 tsp thyme leaves
  • 4 slices crusty white bread
  • 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  • 50 g cheddar cheese, thinly sliced
  • 50 g fresh mozzarella, thinly sliced 

Cook's notes

Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.


Preheat a sandwich press, if you have one.

Heat the oil in a large frying pan over high heat, add the mushrooms and cook until they have released their water and started to colour.

Turn the heat to low, add half the butter, then all of the shallots, garlic and thyme and continue cooking until the mushrooms are cooked through and the butter has started to brown. Check the seasoning. Remove the pan from the heat and place to one side.

Thinly spread the mustard onto one side of the slices of bread. Lay the cheddar slices on top of half of the slices, spoon on the mushroom mixture, then finish with the mozzarella slices. Sandwich with the remaining bread slices.

If using a sandwich press, melt the remaining butter and brush on the both sides of each sandwich.  If not using a sandwich press, melt the remaining butter in a large frying pan over medium heat, then add the sandwiches to the pan. Toast the sandwiches until the cheese is melted and the outside is golden.

Cut in half to serve.


Photography by Benito Martin. Styling by Lynsey Fryers. Food preparation by Nick Banbury. Creative concept by Belinda So.

Paul West is the host of River Cottage Australia, 6pm weeknights on SBS and on SBS On Demand. For more recipes from Paul, click here.