I developed this vegan mushroom pâté because Mr TS and I have been missing the vegetarian version of it which I have been making for Christmas for a very, very long time! It is made with earthy chestnut mushrooms, richly flavoured dried porcini, toasted walnuts, thyme and sherry. I added tamari for the saltiness I used to get from Stilton cheese and whizzed it up so it was all creamy and delicious while retaining some of the texture for a bit of bite.
Just like the veggie version, this vegan mushroom pâté is fabulous with crackers and crusty bread, makes an excellent dip for tortilla chips or grissini and is wonderful as stuffing for munchkin pumpkins, butternut squash and marrows. I think it would be delicious atop a baked potato and I have eaten it slathered onto toast with a good grinding of black pepper on top for brunch on a Sunday – yum!
I’ve topped my mushroom and walnut pâté with extra toasted walnuts and pretty pink peppercorns for a festive touch but it’s also lovely presented in a ramekin decorated with chopped chives or plated up with crunchy, peppery watercress and thick doorstops of crusty bread.
To my mind Christmas isn’t Christmas without a festive Christmas pâté so I’m chuffed to bits that this walnut pâté worked so well. Make it in advance and freeze it so you can whip it out, effortlessly, for your Christmas drinks parties or pop it on the table as a starter on the Big Day!
How to Make Vegan Mushroom Pâté
My mushroom pâté is super simple to make, you just need to gently fry the shallot and mushrooms before adding the soaking liquid and sherry. Reduce it all down until you have hardly any liquid left before adding the toasted walnuts, thyme and tamari. Whizz it all together in a food processor until you have your desired consistency, add salt and black pepper to taste and then spoon it into a serving dish. Pop it into the fridge for an hour or two before serving and you’re done!
A creamy vegan mushroom pâté with walnuts, sherry and thyme perfect for Christmas!
- 6 dried porcini mushrooms
- 50 ml (3 tbsp) boiling water
- 1 banana shallot, finely chopped
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 200 g (2½ cups) chestnut mushrooms, roughly chopped
- 1-2 cloves garlic, finely chopped or to taste
- ½ tbsp chopped fresh thyme
- 1 tbsp vegan sweet sherry
- 100 g (1 cup) walnut pieces
- ½ tbsp tamari sauce/ light soy sauce
- salt and black pepper to taste
- walnuts and pink peppercorns to decorate (optional)
Soak the porcini in the boiling water for 20 minutes until soft and rehydrated.
Toast the walnuts in a dry frying pan until just beginning to brown and they give off a lovely toasted smell.
Fry the shallot very gently in the olive oil until soft, add the chestnut mushrooms and fry for 5 minutes or until they have released their juices.
Add the porcini and garlic and fry for a minute before adding the porcini soaking liquid, tamari/soy and the sherry.
Turn the heat up to high and cook off the liquid until only about a teaspoonful remains.
Transfer the mushroom mixture to a food processor. Add the walnut pieces, chopped thyme and a good grinding of black pepper.
Whizz together, stopping to scrape down the sides, until you get a smooth pâté. I like to keep a bit of texture so I pulse until I'm happy with it!
Taste and add salt and more pepper if needed.
Transfer to a serving dish and chill for an hour or two.
Top with extra walnuts and pink peppercorns and serve.
I’m feeling quite festive already – I love the planning and preparation, the slow build up and the flavours! I’m particularly keen to fill my freezer with goodies so I can just enjoy spending time with family and friends when December arrives. Most vegan recipes freeze easily and this vegan walnut pâté with mushrooms works particularly well so make some now to enjoy once the season gets under way!
I bought the bread which is featured in this recipe from The Rye Bakery which is just a short meander down the hill from home and which makes the most delicious sourdough loaves! If you’re in Frome do pop in and grab one or stop for a bite to eat. Their vegan pizza is delicious and I find their vegan pastries far too tempting!
Watch out for this year’s Christmas centre piece recipe which I have been working on and which I will be sharing with you very soon! In the meantime, cast your eyes over this beauty which is one of the most popular recipes both here on my blog and over on Pinterest!
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