French in a Flash: Awesome Mushroom Pâté

RECIPE: Awesome Mushroom Pâté
Wild Mushroom Pate

Wild Mushroom Pâté

It is my New Year’s tradition to make something with truffles.  They’re so luxurious—and I’m so superstitious.  I figure they will bring a successful year, the way birthday cake brings a sweet one.  This year, I want to make something sophisticated for a New Year’s party.  Something that would go with Champagne.  Something up to the occasion.

This is my mushroom pâté with truffles.  So easy, vegetarian, versatile, scrumptious.  The key is to roast the mushrooms with freshly ground dried mushrooms, whole cloves of garlic, and thyme, so the mushrooms sear and caramelize, the garlic gets softly charred, and the dried mushrooms add that extra shroomy oomph to the whole thing.  I whiz it up with Neufchatel cheese, which is quite low fat, so you can feel good about this in a New Year’s kind of way, and some parsley, and lemon juice.  I finish it with a drizzle of black truffle oil, and some rounds of baguette for smearing.

It’s not a vrai pâté.  But as something light, and fresh, and of course, vegetarian, this trumps it all.  Happy New Year!

Excerpted from my weekly column French in a Flash on Serious Eats.

Wild Mushroom Pate 2

Awesome Mushroom Pâté
serves 4 to 6

Wild Mushroom PateINGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons ground dried mushrooms
  • 13 ounces mixed mushrooms
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, left whole and in their paper jackets
  • Around 8 whole stems of thyme
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly cracked black pepper
  • 3 ounces Neufchatel cheese
  • 1 tablespoon of flat leaf parsley, packed
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • Truffle oil, for drizzling
  • 1 baguette, thinly sliced, for serving

PROCEDURE

Preheat the broiler.  Grind your dried mushrooms to a powder in a mini food processor (it should take a big handful of dried mushrooms).  Put a wide ovensafe braising pot on the stove over medium-high heat.  Cut the caps of mushrooms into beautiful quarters, and roughly chop the stems (unless you’re using shitakes and the stems aren’t edible).  Add the olive oil to the hot pot, followed immediately by the mushrooms, dried mushrooms, garlic, thyme, and salt and pepper.  Toss everything together with tongs, so the mushrooms are well coated with olive oil.  Put the mushrooms about 5 to 6 inches from the broiler and cook for 15 minutes, tossing once.  Scrape everything out of the mushroom pan into a bowl to cool.

When the mushrooms are room temperature, set aside 1/4 cup for garnish.  Put the rest of the mushrooms in the food processor with the Neufchatel, parsley, and lemon juice.  Whiz until smooth.  Taste, and adjust the seasoning.  Decant to a pretty bowl, then drizzle with truffle oil, top with the reserved mushrooms, and serve with thinly sliced baguette.

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Categories: 30 Minutes, Appetizers & Hors D’Oeuvres, Bread & Butter, Dips, Spreads, Preserves, Easy, Eat, For a Crowd, French in a Flash, Recipes, Series, Vegetarian

7 Responses to French in a Flash: Awesome Mushroom Pâté

  1. Fred says:

    Would you serve this hot, warm or fridge-cold ? I’d guess warm but I value your opinion.

    • Kerry says:

      Hi Fred! So, I know this seems like a lot of bother, but I like to refrigerate it to let it set slightly, and then take it out about 15 or so minutes before I serve it so it’s not fridge-cold on the table. But you could definitely serve it straight from the food processor–it will just be slightly softer. Hot would melt the neufchatel too much, and cold would make it too hard to spread, and the flavor would suffer.

  2. Susan S says:

    Hi, this looks so beautiful. I want to make it for Valentine’s day. Do you think it’s OK to make the day before and frig, I understand it should be left out to “soften” a bit before serving. Thanks!

  3. Ally says:

    I’m a little late posting this, but I made this as a dish for the super bowl and it was fantastic! I’d been thinking about it since it was posted and finally got around to making it. It’s definitely something I’ll keep around to take to parties.

    In fact, my super bowl party(for 2) consisted completely of your dishes. I also made the hot dog vol au vents, avocado carpaccio, and the French onion dip. Thank you for all of the awesome recipes. This site is a treasure!

  4. Yin says:

    When do you remove the paper jacket from the garlic cloves?

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