Posts Tagged ‘Mushroom’

Mushroom pate – oh how I love mushrooms….

August 18, 2010

Mushrooms

Another first for me recently was mushroom pate. One of those things that I just have never tried to make – I love mushrooms and I love mushroom pate. I decided to serve this as the party I catered for too. Apologies that there are no photos of the finished product but I promise to add one when I make it again.

It was very simple to make, very tasty and if you are a mushroom lover like myself I strongly recommend you give it a bash!

Ingredients (makes about 400 – 500 mls)

500 grams mushrooms (can be a mix if you want – I used Swiss browns and closed cap white)
1 large onion
Fresh Tarragon (about 1 tablespoon of chopped leaves)
1 large lemon (more if you wish)
200 grams of cream cheese, you could use ricotta or mascarpone
Salt and Pepper
Fresh nutmeg
Butter
Olive oil

Method

Brush mushrooms to remove any dirt. Try to avoid washing them as they will absorb a lot of water.

Mushrooms

Slice mushrooms and saute in a non stick frying pan in a knob of butter and a splash of olive oil until cooked through and most if not all of the liquid released from the mushrooms has evaporated (do not brown). Leave to cool.

Finely dice onion and saute in butter and olive oil. When cooked through soft sweet and translucent (do not brown) leave to the side to cool.

Sauted onion

Juice the lemon and finely chop tarragon (1 tablespoon).

Add cooled mushrooms, cooled onion, cream cheese, lemon juice and tarragon to a food processor. Season with a large pinch of sea salt, several grinds of the pepper mil and about 1/4 of a finely grated nutmeg.

Blend until smooth (a little bit of texture is quite nice so not too smooth).

Taste and add more seasoning if needed and if you wish more lemon.

Pile into attractive ceramic bowls and serve with mini oatcakes. Also delicious on hot buttered wholemeal toast for breakfast.

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Mushroom ricotta and herb filo pie

July 26, 2010

Mushroom and ricotta pie

When I made the Spanakopita the other day I thought why limit myself to spinach! The flakey pastry lends itself really well to mushrooms. I absolutely love mushrooms but don’t really eat them very often. When I do eat them I tend to cook them very simply and have them for breakfast on toast or roast large whole mushroom in the oven with a bit of butter and fresh thyme.

One thing that did concern me a little about using mushrooms is they tend to give out a lot of liquid which could be a bit of a disaster for filo. The ingredients must be relatively dry or you end up with a soggy pastry disaster. Nobody likes soggy pastry!

The key here is to slice the mushrooms and roast them in the oven until the liquid has evaporated. They will give out quite a lot of liquid and you will think that it will never evaporate but be patient it will.

Ingredients (8 portions)

1 packet of filo pastry
200 grams of unsalted butter
500 grams of closed cup mushrooms
250 grams of Portobello mushrooms (or large field mushrooms)
1 small bunch of fresh thyme
1 small bunch of flat leaf parsley
1 small bunch of chives
1 medium red onion
4 large cloves of garlic
250 grams of full fat ricotta
150 grams of Parmesan Reggiano
Olive oil
Salt and Pepper
Fresh nutmeg
Tablespoon of sesame seeds (optional)

Method:

Preheat the oven to 220 degrees Celsius

Mushrooms

Brush off any dirt from the mushrooms. Do not wash them as they will absorb lots of water. Finely slice the mushrooms and place in a large roasting tin or ceramic baking dish.

Sliced mushrooms with Thyme butter olive oil

Use about 50 grams of the butter and cut into small pieces, dot this over the mushrooms. Strip the thyme leaves from the stalks and sprinkle over the mushrooms too. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.

Bake in oven making sure you stir every ten minutes to ensure the mushrooms cook evenly. This will take about 35 – 40 minutes. Depending on how mush liquid comes out of the mushrooms – make sure you cook them until nearly all the mushroom juice has evaporated.

Saute onions and garlic

While this is happening finely dice the onion and garlic and saute in a little olive oil with a pinch of salt until soft and sweet. Leave to the side to cool.

Onions and garlic cooked and left to cool

Finely chop the parsley and chives and add to a large bowl. Finely grate the Parmesan and also add to the bowl along with the ricotta. Once the onion is cool also add to the bowl with about 1/3 of a nutmeg very finely grated.

Grated parmesan ricotta parsley and chives

Once the mushrooms are cooked remove from the oven and let cool slightly – I removed them from the ceramic dish and spread them out on a cold plate to speed this process along.

Cooked mushrooms

When the mushrooms have cooled down a bit stir them into the ricotta and herb mix (they can still be warm just not piping hot).

Add mushrooms to ricotta mix

Mix mushrooms with ricotta

Make sure you do not add any “mushroom juice” to your mix – try and keep it as dry as possible.

You are now ready to layer up your filo.

Filo, pie dish and melted butter

Take the rest of the butter and melt.

Chose a rectangular pie dish about the size of half a sheet of filo (no bigger). The dish can be ceramic, pyrex or metal.

With scissors cut the filo pastry in half.

***Tip: Cover your filo with a damp tea towel or kitchen paper when you are not using it as it dries out VERY quickly.

Brush the base of the pie dish with butter and lay a sheet of filo on top. Brush this sheet with butter and lay another sheet on top keep going until you have layered up half the sheets.

Add filling

Take the mushroom mix dollop onto your filo layers. Spread evenly and then start layering the rest of the filo sheets in the same way.

Brush top layer with butter and score through portions

Brush the top of the pie with butter and then take a sharp knife and cut the top layers of pastry into portions. I got 8 good-sized portions out of mine. (do not cut all the way down to the bottom layers).

If your filo pastry is a bit bigger than your dish tuck the overhanging edges down the sides of the pie dish.

I then sprinkled the top of the pie with sesame seeds – this is optional.

Bake in the oven at 220 degrees Celsius for 25 – 35 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.

Serve hot, warm or cold with a cos lettuce salad and a squeeze of lemon.

Mushroom pie

– this is a fab dish and I am going to try to make this in individual triangles or “fingers” to see how it will work for a cocktail party as finger food. Will keep you posted!!

Risotto to make you happy

May 10, 2010

Mushroom and asparagus risotto

Many people are frightened of risotto and I was too until I made my first one with my friend Liz many many moons ago, I seem to remember that we used almost a whole bottle of wine in it. It was slightly stodgy (a bit winey) but in our opinion a raging success none the less.

Risotto is my favourite comfort food, it is super easy to make and with a large glass of vino and a couple of episodes of Sex and the City will turn any bad day into a great day – guaranteed!!

I think one of the scary things for people about risotto is the “constant stirring” element. To be perfectly honest – I love it, it is therapeutic almost meditative. AND….it is very important to note that if you don’t stir the risotto for a couple of minutes the world will not end.

Risotto is very versatile, I have chosen mushroom because I had quite a lot of mushies to use but there are many many many different kinds of risotto you can try. I usually use what ever I have in the fridge. A few good suggestions are:

– Spinach
– Herb and Lemon (parsley, basil, rocket are good)
– Roasted butternut pumpkin (with spinach if you like)
– Left over roasted chicken thrown in with some lemon or herbs
– Peas and a wee bit of fresh mint
– Mushroom, pea and asparagus
– Asparagus and mint
– Roasted cauliflower
– Char grilled courgettes, fresh corn and oven roasted cherry tomatoes

There really are so many different options!

Anyway I will get onto the recipe:

300 grams arborio rice
Vegetable or chicken stock (I usually used 1 1/2 stock cubes)
1 medium brown onions
4 – 6 cloves of garlic
1 glass of dry white wine (ideally one you would drink not “cooking” wine)
1 – 1 1/2 cups of freshly grated Parmesan as finely grated as you can (Reggiano is best but Padano will be fine) please do not buy pre-grated, fake Parmesan (non-Italian) or dried Parmesan.

Herbs (Basil, Parsley, Fresh Thyme leaves are good)
Mushrooms approx 500 grams (swiss browns, chestnut, button, Portobello, field whatever you have or a mixture)

Salt and pepper
Olive oil
Good unsalted butter (lightly salted will do but unsalted preferable)

****TIP: If I have some wine left over which I know won’t be drunk I pop it in a small freezer bag and put it in the freezer. This is perfect for risotto. If you don’t have wine a dry vermouth will work just as well.

Use a heavy based medium to large pot or heavy based large (deep) frying pan. Add a decent glug of olive oil to the pot (approx 3 – 4 tablespoons), finely dice the onion and garlic and add to the pot with a good pinch of salt. I usually add the onion, garlic and oil to a cold pan then warm up – tends to prevent it browning. Saute until soft and the sharp onion smell has gone and been replaced with a lovely sweet smell. This should take about 10 minutes. Make sure you do not brown the onions – so keep on a low heat.

Onion and garlic being sauteed

***TIP: If the onions/garlic do start to brown add a little bit more olive oil which will immediately drop the oil temp and stop the browning, take off the heat for a minute or two.

Add rice and stir until coated in oil and warmed through, rice should be hot. Add a glass of white wine, and stir until the wine has been absorbed fully by the rice.

Rice added to onion and garlic

Now add piping hot stock about 1 cup at a time. I cheat with this by boiling the kettle and adding in the stock cubes direct to the pot pouring boiling water from the kettle on top.

I actually find this works best as you know exactly how much flavour (stock) you have added and the amount of liquid is on an “as you need” basis. However if you have lovely home-made stock definitely use that!!

If you are using liquid stock heat it up and keep it hot and ladle the stock one ladle at a time.

Keep stirring the risotto adding about 1 cup or 1 ladle of stock/hot water at a time. Make sure the stock is almost fully absorbed before you add your next cup/ladle of stock/water.

While you are doing this saute the sliced mushrooms in a separate pan, ideally a large frying pan DO NOT ADD SALT this will draw out the moisture and make the mushrooms stew. If you do not have a large frying pan do them in 2 batches. Saute in some butter and a splash of olive oil. Once they are cooked add Salt and Pepper and some chopped herbs. Or you can bake sliced mushrooms in the oven with butter, olive oil until they are cooked through – approx 25 mins at 190 degrees celsius. Once they are cooked keep the mushrooms to the side.

Sliced portobello and chestnut mushrooms with butter, olive oil and fresh thyme

Keep doing this for about 20 mins, I usually start trying the rice to see if it is cooked about this time. Keep going with the stock until you are happy with the rice, it will need to be cooked until it has a little bit of a bite “al dente”.

The consistency should not be to stodgy, if it is, add a little bit more liquid.

Add mushrooms, a knob of butter, any chopped herbs and Parmesan. Stir vigorously shaking the pot at the same time. If it is getting too thick add a little bit of extra boiling water.

Taste and season if necessary.

This should serve 3 – 4 hungry people. Serve with a lovely fresh leafy salad.

I normally serve this is a low pasta type bowl with a drizzle of best quality peppery extra virgin olive oil on top.

Left overs:

If you have any leftovers, you can roll it into small golf ball sizes, use wet hands to prevent sticking. Roll in some flour, egg and then bread crumbs then deep fat fry until golden brown. You can also add a small piece of mozzarella into the center for a little bit of gooey fun. These can be served as an entrée with garlic aioli or with a tomato and basil sauce and a salad as a main course. YUMMY!

Mushroom risotto (and other suggestions)

April 30, 2010

Many people are frightened of risotto and I was too until I made my first one with my friend Liz many many moons ago, I seem to remember that we used almost a whole bottle of wine in it. It was slightly stodgy (a bit winey) but in our opinion a raging success none the less.

Risotto is my favourite comfort food, it is super easy to make and with a large glass of vino and a couple of episodes of Sex and the City will turn any bad day into a great day – guaranteed!!

I think one of the scary things for people about risotto is the “constant stirring” element. To be perfectly honest – I love it, it is therapeutic almost meditative. AND….it is very important to note that if you don’t stir the risotto for a couple of minutes the world will not end.

Risotto is very versatile, I have chosen mushroom because I had quite a lot of mushies to use but there are many many many different kinds of risotto you can try. I usually use what ever I have in the fridge. A few good suggestions are:

– Spinach
– Herb and Lemon (parsley, basil, rocket are good)
– Roasted butternut pumpkin (with spinach if you like)
– Left over roasted chicken thrown in with some lemon or herbs
– Peas and a wee bit of fresh mint
– Mushroom, pea and asparagus
– Asparagus and mint
– Roasted cauliflower
– Char grilled courgettes, fresh corn and oven roasted cherry tomatoes

There really are so many different options!

Anyway I will get onto the recipe:

300 grams arborio rice
Vegetable or chicken stock (I usually used 1 1/2 stock cubes)
1 medium brown onions
4 – 6 cloves of garlic
1 glass of dry white wine (ideally one you would drink not “cooking” wine)
1 – 1 1/2 cups of freshly grated Parmesan as finely grated as you can (Reggiano is best but Padano will be fine) please do not buy pre-grated, fake Parmesan (non-Italian) or dried Parmesan.

Herbs (Basil, Parsley, Fresh Thyme leaves are good)
Mushrooms approx 500 grams (swiss browns, chestnut, button, Portobello, field whatever you have or a mixture)

Salt and pepper
Olive oil
Good unsalted butter (lightly salted will do but unsalted preferable)

****TIP: If I have some wine left over which I know won’t be drunk I pop it in a small freezer bag and put it in the freezer. This is perfect for risotto. If you don’t have wine a dry vermouth will work just as well.

Use a heavy based medium to large pot or heavy based large (deep) frying pan. Add a decent glug of olive oil to the pot (approx 3 – 4 tablespoons), finely dice the onion and garlic and add to the pot with a good pinch of salt. I usually add the onion, garlic and oil to a cold pan then warm up – tends to prevent it browning. Saute until soft and the sharp onion smell has gone and been replaced with a lovely sweet smell. This should take about 10 minutes. Make sure you do not brown the onions – so keep on a low heat.

***TIP: If the onions/garlic do start to brown add a little bit more olive oil which will immediately drop the oil temp and stop the browning, take off the heat for a minute or two.

Add rice and stir until coated in oil and warmed through, rice should be hot. Add a glass of white wine, and stir until the wine has been absorbed fully by the rice.

Now add piping hot stock about 1 cup at a time. I cheat with this by boiling the kettle and adding in the stock cubes direct to the pot pouring boiling water from the kettle on top.

I actually find this works best as you know exactly how much flavour (stock) you have added and the amount of liquid is on an “as you need” basis. However if you have lovely home-made stock definitely use that!!

If you are using liquid stock heat it up and keep it hot and ladle the stock one ladle at a time.

Keep stirring the risotto adding about 1 cup or 1 ladle of stock/hot water at a time. Make sure the stock is almost fully absorbed before you add your next cup/ladle of stock/water.

While you are doing this saute the sliced mushrooms in a separate pan, ideally a large frying pan DO NOT ADD SALT this will draw out the moisture and make the mushrooms stew. If you do not have a large frying pan do them in 2 batches. Saute in some butter and a splash of olive oil. Once they are cooked add Salt and Pepper and some chopped herbs. Keep to the side.

Keep doing this for about 20 mins, I usually start trying the rice to see if it is cooked about this time. Keep going with the stock until you are happy with the rice, it will need to be cooked until it has a little bit of a bite “al dente”.

The consistency should not be to stodgy, if it is, add a little bit more liquid.

Add mushrooms, a knob of butter, any chopped herbs and Parmesan. Stir vigorously shaking the pot at the same time. If it is getting too thick add a little bit of extra boiling water.

Taste and season if necessary.

This should serve 3 – 4 hungry people. Serve with a lovely fresh leafy salad.

I normally serve this is a low pasta type bowl with a drizzle of best quality peppery extra virgin olive oil on top.

Left overs:

If you have any leftovers, you can roll it into small golf ball sizes, use wet hands to prevent sticking. Roll in some flour, egg and then bread crumbs then deep fat fry until golden brown. You can also add a small piece of mozzarella into the center for a little bit of gooey fun. These can be served as an entrée with garlic aioli or with a tomato and basil sauce and a salad as a main course. YUMMY!