There are days I cook. Like the other day. I made this pate. And bam. Is it ever good.
I dreamt it. Then I made it.
There are many recipes out there on the WWW competing for your culinary energy. My recipes are tricky because I make them up as I go along. The quantities are often guesstimates*, so I ask you to use your taste buds, and experiment to make it your mushroom-lentil pate to die for.
This is how I made this pate. I kid you not.
It all started on my Covid-19 stay@home weekly trip to the supermarket. I saw the sliced crimini mushrooms. They were *on sale*. So I grabbed them. Put them in the back of the fridge and forgot about them.
This may be a critical step in the ripening of the mushrooms. I am not sure. I have never before tried it. I am wondering if it enhances their earthy flavor.
A week later, before returning to the supermarket I did a fridge check to see what I needed, and lo – there be an unused package of mushrooms. Oh my. Time to cook those!
Pop them into the fry pan along with a couple Tablespoons of olive oil, half an onion, diced – and garlic. Sheesh. No garlic! Add that to the list!
Generously salt and pepper. I use coarse sea salt which I grind directly into whatever,and mixed whole peppers, also ground directly into the dish. Put a lid on the pan, turn the heat down and forget about them. Well not completely. Saute those mushrooms and onions till they are soft.
Then, short on time (I had to go shopping, plus there’s no garlic, remember) I just put the cooked mushrooms and onions in a bowl, with a lid, and popped them in the fridge – again.
And. There. They. Sat. For. How? Many? Days? I do not know. Another step in the mushroom ripening process?
Then I had a chat with my niece:
“What you doing today?” she asks.
“I don’t know. I have some cooked mushrooms in the fridge I have to use up.”
“What are you going to do with them?”
“I don’t know, maybe make some veggie pate.”
“How would you make pate with mushrooms?”
“Oh cook some lentils and mic them with up with some herbs and spices.”
A few days later, I made the pate.
Here’s the recipe:
- a couple Tablespoons olive oil
- a couple tablespoons butter
- 200 grams sliced crimini mushrooms
- 1 small onion diced
- 2 largish cloves of garlic. Diced.
- about 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt
- 1 tsp coarsely ground mixed pepper
- a couple sprigs fresh thyme (1-2 tsp of the little leaves, dried thyme would be about half as much, look at the pictures.)
- the same of fresh rosemary (it’s about a Tablespoon)
- about 2 Tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
- about 1 Tablespoon soya sauce
- about 1-2 Tablespoon balsamic vinegar
- 1 teaspoon brown sugar (not a grain more!!!)
- 4 or 5 drops of hot sauce (you can also use cayenne pepper, be careful – this is optional – you don’t want to heat it up).
While you are sauteing the mushrooms, cook:
- 1 cup of dried red lentils in about
- 2.5 cups of water.
Bring water to a boil, then reduce heat to a simmer, and cook until the water the is all gone. Yes. Cook until the lentils are pure mush, and boiled dry but not burnt. You need to stay close by and use your ears, nose and eyes!
When the lentils are cooked, add 2 cups of the mush to the mushrooms and onions and mix in:
- 1 cup of roasted walnut pieces (toss them on a cookie sheet in the oven at 350 for 7-10 minutes, depends on how hot your oven is.)
- 1.5 Tablespoons chia seeds
Reduce heat to very low, put the lid on, and let that sit on the heat for a few minutes.
Meanwhile prepare your pans by greasing them with olive oil. This is enough mixture to make 3 mini-loaf pans that measure 2.5 X 4.5 inches on the bottom of the pan and 3.25 X 5 inches on top.
Put the filled pans in the fridge for a few hours to chill and set. This is way better the second day. You can also freeze this for use at a later time.