Mem’s Mushroom Baskets
During the recent lockdown, I spent a lot more time in the kitchen, which I welcomed whole heartedly. I had more time to experiment and create new recipes and work on ideas. One of which were these stuffed mushrooms in pastry baskets! Danny and I were having a conversation about vegan options for the main component of a sunday roast and how we need to come up with something new. We love anything pastry based and obviously adore a stuffed mushroom, so Danny said “cover the mushroom in pastry!” So I will give him the credit for the idea… but then I made it happen… and he was delighted! (What a team!). Since coming up with the recipe we’ve had them a bunch of times and we can’t get enough.
The mixture for the filling is a bit like a rich and creamy red pesto with a little kick (which you can alter to your taste of course) and with the lemony breadcrumbs on top, it makes for a delightful alternative roast dinner. So maybe not your typical sunday roast flavours, but life is about mixing things up isn’t it? We usually serve this up with a side of simple roasted veg and potatoes, but you can go for more of an all out roast if you’d prefer! Of course it doesn’t have to be a roast – for instance, it would go very nicely with mash potato, chips and mushy peas or a couscous salad.
Mem's Mushroom Baskets
A flavour packed stuffed mushroom in a pastry basket.
- 1 roll vegan puff pastry just roll or supermarket own brands are vegan
- 4 large portobello or flat mushrooms bigger the better!
- 1 Tbsp plant based milk I used oat
- 3 Tbsp breadcrumbs
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
For the filling
- 3 Tbsp pine nuts
- 4 Tbsp Nutritional yeast we use Engivita brand
- 3 Tbsp breadcrumbs or a few slices of bread
- 1 large handful of fresh basil leaves
- 1 medium fresh red chilli remove the seeds if you like it mild
- 2 cloves garlic
- 4 Tbsp Lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp vegan cream cheese I used violife
- 4 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tsp tomato pureé
- salt and pepper to season
Pre-heat the oven to 200°c. Line a baking tray with baking paper.
If you need to make your own breadcrumbs, start by blitzing up the bread in a blender until it has broken down into small crumbs (discard any big lumps that won't blend). Take roughly 3 Tbsp of the breadcrumbs out and set to one side to use on the topping later, leaving about the same amount in the filling.
First remove the garlic skins and the tip of the chilli, then add the rest of the filling ingredients into the blender with the breadcrumbs. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and then blend until smooth.
If the mushrooms are a little shabby, peel them if necessary or give them a little wipe, then pull out the stalk so that the mushroom is more of a cup. You can then chuck these stalks into the blender and blend them up with the filling (no waste here!).
Place the mushrooms on a baking tray with a small drizzle of olive oil and season with salt and pepper, cook them in the oven for 8-10 mins. Take the pastry out of the fridge to come to room temperature.
Once the mushrooms have cooked a little, take them out and leave them to cool whilst you prep the pastry. (This is important so the pastry sticks to them easier).
Cut the pastry into 4 large squares and 8 thin strips to use as handles (see pictures for a reference). Once the mushrooms are cool, divide the filling between them all and then top with breadcrumbs and a squeeze of lemon juice.
Place each mushroom into the middle of a pastry square, pinch the sides and fold in the corners so that the pastry is hugging the mushroom (it doesn't matter if it's not super neat). Use 2 strips of pastry to make a cross over each mushroom pinch the ends slightly so that it sticks to the bottom pastry. Brush with a little plant based milk, place on the baking tray and bake in the oven for around 20 minutes until golden brown.
We recommend serving the mushroom baskets up with oven roasted veggies or a crispy salad and potatoes.