Mushrooms are another one of those vegetables that you can use in cooking, either to add flavour and colour or can make a meal on their own.

Mushroom Risotto is one of my favourite meals and who hasn’t had pizza with mushrooms on either meat or vegetables; they go with both. Add mushrooms to your Bolognese sauce and get some vegetable down the children without them knowing! These days there are lots of varieties of mushrooms on sale in the shops, but if you are worried about trying different ones, just stick to the good old fashioned button mushrooms which are grown indoors in compost and don’t even need washing! Below are a few recipes including an easy soup recipe and if you have never tried making pâté, give this easy recipe a go; it is delicious.
Buen Appettio

Mushroom Stroganoff

1 onion
2 tsp olive oil
1 garlic (cloves to taste)
1 tbsp paprika
300g mixed mushrooms
150ml vegetable stock
1 tsp Worcestershire Sauce
Small pot of sour cream
Fresh parsley to taste
250g pouch cooked wild rice

Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan and soften the onion for about 5 mins. Add the garlic and paprika, then cook for 1 min more. Add mushrooms and cook on a high heat, stirring often, for about 5 mins. Pour in the stock and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to the boil; bubble for 5 mins until the sauce thickens, then turn off the heat and stir in the soured cream and most of the parsley. Make sure the pan is not on the heat or the sauce may split. Heat rice following pack instructions, then stir through the remaining parsley and serve with the stroganoff.

Easy Mushroom Risotto

200g pearled rice or risotto rice
25g dried porcini mushrooms
½ tbsp olive oil
1 onion
2 garlic clove, finely chopped
100g chestnut button mushrooms
100ml white wine
1l hot vegetable stock
1 tbsp low-fat crème fraiche
Bunch chives, finely chopped
Handful grated Parmesan to serve (optional)

Cover the rice with cold water and soak the dried mushrooms in 100ml boiling water in a separate bowl for 20 mins. Heat the olive oil in a large frying pan. Tip in the onion and garlic, cook for 2 mins, then add the chestnut mushrooms and cook for a further 2 mins. Drain the rice and add along with the wine. Simmer until almost all the liquid evaporates, stirring often. Drain the porcini mushrooms, add them to the pan and the soaking liquid to the vegetable stock. Stir in the stock 1 cup at a time and simmer, stirring often, until all liquid is absorbed and the rice is just tender, about 20 mins in total. Stir in the crème fraiche and season with salt and pepper. Spoon onto plates and sprinkle over chives and cheese (if using).

Mushroom and Walnut Stuffed Tomatoes

1 tbsp sunflower oil
175g chestnut mushroom, diced
1 garlic clove, crushed
12 semi-dried tomatoes
50g dried white breadcrumbs
25g walnuts
Small bunch parsley
1 tsp dried chilli flakes
4 tsp fresh pesto
Black pepper to taste
2 small red or yellow pepper

Heat oven to 220ºC/200ºC fan/gas 7. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and stir-fry the mushrooms over a high heat for 5 mins. Season with a good grind of black pepper and remove from the heat. Stir in the garlic, tomato pieces, breadcrumbs, walnuts, chopped parsley, chilli flakes and pesto until thoroughly combined. Cut the peppers in half from top to bottom. Carefully remove the seeds and membrane. Place in a small foil lined roasting tin and fill with the mushroom stuffing. Cover the surface of the stuffing with a small piece of foil. Bake for 35-40 mins until tender.

Cream of Mushroom Soup

25g dried porcini (ceps)
50g butter
1 garlic clove, sliced
400g mixed wild mushrooms
850ml vegetable stock
200ml tub crème fraise
4 slices white bread, about 100g, cubed
Chives and truffle oil, to serve

Bring a kettle to the boil, then pour the water over the dried porcini just to cover. Heat half the butter in a saucepan, then gently sizzle the onion, garlic and thyme for 5 mins until softened and starting to brown. Drain the porcini, reserving the juice, then add to the onion with the mixed wild mushrooms. Leave to cook for 5 mins until they go limp. Pour over the stock and the reserved juices, bring to the boil, then simmer for 20 mins. Stir in crème fraise, then simmer for a few mins more. Blitz the soup with a hand blender or liquidiser, pass through a fine sieve, then set aside.

Heat the remaining butter in a frying pan, fry the bread cubes until golden, then drain on kitchen paper. To serve, heat the soup and froth up with a hand blender, if you like. Ladle the soup into bowls, scatter over the croutons and chives and drizzle with truffle oil.

Mushroom and Tarragon Pâté

50g unsalted butter
2 shallot or small onion
1 leek
2 garlic clove, crushed
100g chestnut mushroom, finely chopped
100g shiitake mushroom, finely chopped
2 tsp wholegrain mustard
2 tbsp crème fraiche
3 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon (extra to garnish)
1 French stick
Extra virgin olive oil
Mixed salad leaves, to serve

Heat butter in a large frying pan. Add finely chopped shallots, leek and garlic, then gently fry for 7 mins until softened. Increase the heat, add the chestnut and the shiitake mushrooms, then cook for 10 mins, stirring until the juices have evaporated and the mushrooms are tender. Stir in the mustard and crème fraiche, then season well. Cook for a further 2 mins then stir in the chopped tarragon. Preheat the grill. Cut the French stick into diagonal slices, drizzle with a little olive oil, then grill until golden. Spoon the hot pâté on to the toasts, garnish with the extra tarragon, then serve with salad leaves.