Nutty Wild Mushroom Pate

by Sarah on April 18, 2013 · 14 comments

On Monday night I did mushrooms at Whole Foods.

OK, y’all know I don’t mean that kind of ‘shrooms, but I couldn’t resist. :) What I meant to say was Monday night found me teaching yet another cooking class at our local Whole Foods.

Becca, the in-store Healthy Eating Expert, and I had been tossing ideas around, mostly related to Earth Month, and then I let it slip that I was from the mushroom capital of the world, and she knew exactly what she wanted me to teach.

‘Fungus Among Us’ might have confused some people as it was listed on the store calendar, but one thing I was definitely NOT confused about was the first dish I wanted to (re)create and teach.

This Nutty Wild Mushroom Pate has been sitting on the back burner known as the ‘recipes’ folder on my computer since I first discovered it in, of all places, a Jane Green novel.

[In a strange twist of fate, the other recipe I adapted from the novel was a Vegan Spinach Quiche, also featuring mushrooms, and also taught in April at a Whole Foods cooking class.]

I took the recipe from the novel and changed it up quite a bit, based on my favorite flavorings…

thyme, rosemary,sage, pepper, nutritional yeast, BBQ sauce

….and what looked good at the store when I went shopping.

shallots: garlic's less wild sister

I wanted to use a combination of a number of different mushrooms–

—although I realize it really doesn’t make sense since they end up all getting mixed together anyway.

shallots and garlic cooked with shitakes, combined in a food processor with soaked dried porcinis, trumpet, and oyster mushrooms

So, you could use all button mushrooms, or all wild mushrooms, or just one type of dried mushroom. [I used dried mushrooms based off of the original recipe, but also because it is the cheapest way to get some really yummy varieties, like those porcinis.]

Like my favorite veggie burger recipe, this ‘pate” calls for cooked quinoa (and/or brown rice).

And like most vegan recipes ever created, involves tahini (and dijon mustard).

This mixture is already super flavorful, but for added texture, getting a little nutty is a good idea.

I combined chopped toasted pecans and walnuts (and it does still taste amazing even if they aren’t toasted) into the mix, pulsed, so there is still texture and a bit of crunch.

Carnivorous pates already aren’t pretty, and this vegan version is one ugly mess of mush(rooms?). 

But a little time in the fridge, and a bit of creative molding

–along with some artfully placed garnish, can make a world of difference. And as the requests for seconds, and the Clean Plate Club proved: ugly often means ugl-oriously delicious.

Nutty Wild Mushroom Pate

[Makes 3 cups or so]

  • 1 ½ cups sliced shallots (about 4 large)
  • 3 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 cup dried mushrooms, soaked in water overnight or for a few hours
  • 1 cup fresh sliced shitake mushrooms [may substitute creminis or buttons]
  • ¼ cup fresh parsley
  • ¾ cup cooked quinoa or brown rice
  • 2 Tbsp. BBQ sauce
  • 1 Tbsp. tahini
  • 1 Tbsp. nutritional yeast
  • 1 Tbsp. Dijon mustard
  • ½ Tbsp. soy sauce or liquid aminos
  • ½ tsp. dried sage
  • ½ tsp. dried rosemary
  • ½ tsp. dried thyme
  • lemon juice
  • salt + pepper
  • 1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted
  1. Steam shallots and garlic by combining with water in a small saucepan over medium heat.
  2. Once softened and fragrant, stir in fresh mushrooms. Cook 1-2 minutes until softened.
  3. Combine cooked mushrooms, soaked mushrooms, and parsley in a food processor. Process briefly, so still texturous.
  4. Add quinoa and remaining ingredients, except nuts. Process well.
  5. Add nuts. Pulse until just incorporated.
  6. Allow to cool in the fridge at least an hour, but preferably overnight.

To serve as a pate: Line a small bowl with plastic wrap and scoop mixture into it, pressing down as you go. Allow to chill like this. When ready to serve, flip bowl over, and peel away plastic wrap. Garnish with fresh parsley and more chopped nuts. Serve with crackers or crudité.

To serve as a spread: Either serve in a bowl with chips on the side, or as bruschetta on crostini with a garnish of chopped nuts and parsley.

To serve as croquettes: Mold mushroom mixture into small patties, roll in Panko breadcrumbs or coarsely ground nuts. Bake until heated through. [Or pan sear/quick fry, if desired.]


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