In my short cooking journey this mushroom bourguignon is the closest I’ve come (so far) to making a restaurant-quality main course at home.
We can describe it quickly as a mushroom and red wine stew, with humble origins. It was originally a peasant dish from the Burgundy region of France. It was simply a way of cooking tough cuts of meat slowly in red wine to soften and tenderise them.
Even in our veganised version with mushrooms replacing meat, it’s not a quick meal to prepare. The mushrooms need time to soak up the wine and herbs in which we’re going to cook them. But the slow cooking process creates deep, strong flavours like you won’t believe.
Serve it on a broad ribbon pasta like tagliatelle. Spaghetti would work too, but the wider strands of tagliatelle hold the sauce better.
Ingredients (serves 4)
- 2 tablespoons of olive oil
- 2 x 450g packs of mushrooms (baby Portobellos or chestnut mushrooms are fine, button mushrooms won’t work in this), sliced fairly thick
- 6 large carrots – scrubbed and sliced into 2cm pieces
- 1 large yellow onion – diced
- 2 cloves of garlic – peeled and chopped finely
- 2 cups of vegetable stock
- 1½ cups of red wine (almost half a bottle)
- 1 tablespoon of tomato purée
- 2 teaspoons of sea salt
- A handful of fresh thyme leaves
- 2 teaspoons of dried Italian seasoning/mixed herbs
- 1 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon of plain flour
- ⅓ of a cup of water
- 1 packet of tagliatelle or similar pasta
- Heat up a large pan, add a tablespoon of olive oil and drop in the sliced mushrooms. Add a pinch of salt and cook them for about 10 minutes. Then take them out of the pan and put to one side.
- Add another tablespoon of olive oil to the same pan and cook the carrots. Sauté them for about five minutes then add the onions. Cook the onions until they become translucent, maybe ten minutes or so, then add the garlic and cook for another minute.
- Add the vegetable stock and the red wine to deglaze the pan. Stir everything well, scrape up any bits of onion and carrot that are stuck to the bottom of the pan. Add the tomato purée and mix it in until it’s completely dissolved.
- Add the sea salt, thyme, Italian seasoning and a couple of twists of pepper. Stir the dish – it’s already smelling good, isn’t it? Reduce the heat to a low simmer, cover the pan and cook for twenty minutes.
- Mix together the flour and water in a cup to make a paste. Make sure the flour is completely dissolved and then add it to the wine sauce and stir well to combine.This is going to thicken the wine and stock into a proper stew.
- Add the mushrooms back to the pan and fold them in the sauce to get them well coated. Cover the pan again and simmer gently on a low temperature for twenty minutes. During this time, the sauce will thicken to its final consistency, so you’ll need to check it every five minutes or so, to make sure it’s not too thick or sticking to the pan. If it needs to be thinned, add a little water or vegetable stock. If it needs to be thicker, mix a little more flour/water paste and add that. (Don’t tip flour straight in to the stew, like I did. The flour goes lumpy and you’ll struggle to get the lumps out.)
- Fifteen minutes before the sauce is done, cook the pasta according to the directions on the packet. You should plan on the pasta being ready just before the bourguignon is done so you’re not rushing things.
- Spoon the mushroom bourguignon onto a bed of pasta and sprinkle a few sprigs of thyme on top.
Thanks: I came across the original version of this recipe at Veganosity so credit is theirs.