Mushroom pâté

This mushroom pâté recipe is unbelievably easy to make. I structured it around a recipe by Simon Rimmer from BBC Food, which you can also have a read of here. It’s a brilliant vegetarian starter or picnic dish. You can serve it with crackers, bread, or toast. Here I’ve served mine with sourdough bread.

Yes, I admit when you pour it out of the mixer, it doesn’t look very appealing, but I fried off a few slices of mushroom for decoration to pretty it up a bit.

You will need:

  • garlic, crushed
  • 1 shallot, diced (could also use onion)
  • a selection of mushrooms, washed and sliced (any dried mushrooms need to be soaked first)
  • a splash of white wine
  • thyme, picked from the stem
  • 2 tablespoons of ricotta
  • salt and cracked black pepper

You can use any variety of mushrooms you have in the house, but it needs something with a strong flavour. My pâté gets its strong flavour from the shiitake and dried porcini, but the chestnut brings the nice smooth texture to the party.

Porcini, chestnut and shiitake

Melt a knob of butter in a pan on a medium heat, then add the garlic and shallots.

Fry shallots

Once the shallots have turned transparent, add your mushrooms, but save any ones soaking for a bit later. Save a few of you nicest looking slices for decoration.

Frying mushrooms

Add your thyme, a splash of wine, a pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper and turn the heat up. Also add your soaking mushrooms at this point, along with the water.

Add wine and porcini

Once the wine has been absorbed, transfer the mixture into your blender and add a big dollop of ricotta. Blend away until you’ve reached your preferred texture. Taste as you go, adding more salt and pepper if it needs it.

Blend with ricotta

Line a rectangular dish with cling film. Obviously, the size of your dish should depend on the amount of pâté you’ve made, but try not to make it too thick.

Line dish with cling film

Spoon the mixture out of the blender and into the dish. It was at this point my mother walked in and gave me her opinion of my creation. She went for ‘It looks interesting.’ I decided she was right and fried off a few thin slices of mushroom to put on top of the pâté. A bit fiddly, I know, but worth it.

Pour into dish

Put the pâté in the fridge for a few hours or until set. It won’t be completely solid, but when sliced, should stand on its own.
Enjoy with your choice of bread, toast, crackers or whatever takes your fancy.

Serve

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