Mushroom Ragu

mushroom ragu

Mushroom Ragu

A few years ago I spent a month being vegetarian. If I had this recipe in my repertoire back then it would have made vegetarian life much more pleasurable! If you can seek out some exotic mushrooms, you will be well rewarded but it’s really great with an old supermarket mushies.

takes: 2.5 hours
makes: enough for 4-6

1kg (2lb) mixed mushrooms
1 can tomatoes (400g / 14oz)
1 head garlic, broken into individual cloves
2-4 hunks butter
thyme or bay leaves, optional

1. Place mushrooms, tomato, unpeeled garlic cloves, butter and herbs (if using) in a large oven proof dish. Cover with a lid or foil.

2. Turn oven to 150C (300F) and bake mushrooms for 1 hour.

3. Stir mushrooms and remove the lid. Bake for another 1 to 1 1/2 hours or until the sauce is reduced and the mushrooms are lovely and deep golden. Taste and season.

4. Either serve hot or cool and refrigerate or freeze.

Variations

carnivore – add few chopped rashers of bacon, chopped pancetta or crumbled raw pork sausages at the beginning.

dairy-free – replace the butter with a very generous drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

super mushroom – take the mushroominess to another level with a small handful of dried porcini mushrooms. Soak first in warm water for about 10 minutes then add to the pot along with the the soaking liquid.

Reheating Guidelines

Either pop in the oven with a lid on for 15 minutes or so (180C / 350F). Or place in a saucepan and reheat over a medium heat, stirring every few minutes.
If it is a little dry, add a splash of water or some more butter.

Serving Suggestions

as a ragu – Lovely with cooked pasta, mashed potatoes, zucchini noodles or carrot noodles.

with lentils – I had it last night on a bed of lovely lentils with a salad on the side and was really happy!

light – serve on a bed of baby spinach leaves.

cheesey – this is right at home with a generous dusting of parmesan cheese.

protein boost – serve with a poached egg or fried egg on top.

Storage Best Practices

Like all slow cooked dishes, this will improve with a little time sitting in the fridge.
Store in an airtight container or ziplock bag. Will keep in the fridge for 2-3 weeks or so.
Easy freeze meal? Can be frozen for up to 12 months.

Waste Avoidance Strategy

mushrooms – best to cook them in the ragu.

tomatoes, garlic – pantry.

butter – keeps in the fridge for months.

thyme or bay leaves – keep in a plastc bag in the fridge for weeks. Freezes well.

Problem Solving Guide

too watery– just keep cooking with the lid off until the sauce is how you’d like it to be.

mushrooms chewy
– if your mushrooms aren’t cooked properly the texture can end up being a little chewy. Keep cooking. And remember if you’re using different mushrooms varieties, try and chop them so they’re about the same size so they cook in roughly the same amount of time.

mushrooms burnt
-you’ll need to keep an eye on the mushrooms for the last 1/2 hour of cooking to make sure they don’t burn. If they’re not to bad, stirring in a little water can help moisten them up again but if they’re really black, you might need to scrap them.

bland
– season with more salt and pepper or try a little tomato paste.

back to: Simple Slow Cooking Overview

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