Mushroom Ragout

When Diana and I first met, she had just come from visiting a shiitake man in the woods near the Finger Lakes. We left our weekend at Eat Retreat with inoculated logs to grow our own mushrooms. True story – you can do that. We love mushrooms, but no longer grow them ourselves. We make lots of delicious things with them, like this (VEGAN!) mushroom ragout. Diana has a “mushroom guy” at the Atwater Village farmers’ market she loves, and we definitely recommend sourcing out the best mushrooms you can and mixing up varieties as much as possible. Different flavors and textures are perfect for this dish. Inspired by Marius Jovaiša and his personal garden to make his vegan lifestyle in Lithuania consistently delicious, we think this is a great way to have a vegan dinner without sacrificing any flavor. Side note, if you’re not vegan, please feel free to smother this in grated cheese. 

Mushroom Ragout
Serves 4
  1. 2 pounds mixed fresh wild mushrooms, not plain white button mushrooms, please!
  2. 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  3. 2 shallots, peeled and finely chopped
  4. 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  5. 1, 28 ounce can whole tomatoes
  6. 3 sprigs fresh thyme, divided
  7. salt and pepper, to taste
  1. Separate mushroom caps from stems. Thinly slice all the mushroom caps – we used a mix of shiitake and cremini. In a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium-high heat. Sauté the sliced mushroom caps with a pinch of salt until they lose all their liquid and start to brown, about 15 to 18 minutes total. Keep building color – that will be the base for all the flavor. Remove mushrooms from the pan and set aside.
  2. Finely mince shallots and garlic with the mushroom stems. This is a duxelle –a fancy word for tiny pieces of mushroom and shallot. Add remaining two tablespoons of oil to the pan. Add duxelle and to sauté for ten minutes. Stir continuously. If there are dry spots in the pan, you can add a little liquid to scrape it up before things burn, but generally, the pan should be dry and everything should be well-browned. When everything in the pan is really toasty, add 2 cups of dry white wine. Use the liquid to scrape up anything sticking to the bottom of the pan.
  3. When the wine has evaporated, about 5 minutes, add the can of tomatoes and 2 sprigs of thyme. Allow tomatoes to simmer for 5 to 7 minutes, stirring intermittently. Add reserved sliced mushrooms and simmer for approximately 25 minutes until the sauce has thickened. Taste for salt and pepper.
  4. This mixture can be spread over toast and eaten cold or hot, but we love it over some wide noodles, like papardelle garnished with extra thyme leaves.
Lucky Banks Eats

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