Wild Mushroom Ragoût with Cheesy Polenta
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Wild Mushroom Ragoût with Cheesy Polenta

The earthy flavours of mushrooms pair perfectly with cheesy, creamy polenta. This vegetarian dish is both rustically simple and elegant at the same time. Good ingredients are crucial; celebrate the seasons by using a selection of fresh, wild mushrooms.

You can substitute the homemade mushroom broth for a good quality, low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock for ease. If you do decide to make the homemade stock, freeze the remaining for a rainy day – you’ll be very thankful for it.

Wild Mushroom Ragoût with Cheesy Polenta

Wild Mushroom Ragoût with Cheesy Polenta

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Course: Dinner, LunchCuisine: FrenchDifficulty: Easy
Servings

4

servings
Prep time

10

minutes
Cooking time

20

minutes
Homemade stock

2

hours

You can substitute the homemade mushroom broth for a good quality, low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock for ease.

Ingredients

  • Homemade mushroom broth
  • 3 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

  • 400 g white mushrooms, chopped

  • 100 g dried porcini mushrooms

  • 1 large onion

  • 2 medium carrots, chopped

  • 1 stick celery, chopped

  • 1 sprig thyme

  • 1 sprig rosemary

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1/2 tsp whole black peppercorns

  • 120 ml Marsala or Madeira

  • 200 ml water

  • Mushroom ragoût
  • 40 g butter

  • 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 shallot, chopped

  • 500 g mixed wild mushrooms, such as Ceps, Chanterelles, Oyster, Hen of the woods

  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced

  • 125 ml full-bodied red wine such Cabernet Sauvinon or Merlot (optional)

  • 2 sprigs thyme, leaves picked

  • 125 ml homemade stock or vegetable/ chicken stock

  • 2 tsp aged balsamic vinegar

  • Cheesy polenta
  • 1 l full-fat milk

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 180 g fine polenta

  • 20 g roquefort

  • 60 g butter

  • aged parmesan, to serve

Directions

  • Homemade mushroom broth
  • In a large pot, heat the oil. Add everything but the dried mushrooms, water and Marsala to the pot. Cook over a medium-high heat until the vegetables are softened and browned, around 15 minutes.
  • Deglaze the pan by adding the Marsala or Madeira and cook until evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add the dried mushrooms and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 1 and a half to 2 hours, until the stock has reduced to around 6 cups.
  • Strain the stock and put aside. Freeze the remaining when fully cooled.
  • Mushroom ragoût
  • Heat half of the butter and all of the olive oil in a very large saucepan. When foaming, add the shallot and fry until softened. Add the mushrooms and fry over a high heat until golden. Add the garlic and fry for a further minute. Deglaze the pan with the wine and scrape the base of the saucepan, cook until the wine is reduced by half. Add the thyme and stock, simmer until you have a thickened stew, around 15 minutes. Add the remaining butter, balsamic and season to taste.
  • Cheesy polenta
  • Meanwhile, make the cheesy polenta by bringing the milk and bay leaf to a simmer over a medium heat. Add the polenta in a steady stream, whisking steadily until thick and smooth. Whisk in Roquefort and butter, season to taste.
  • Serve by spooning a crater of polenta into a bowl, top with the ragoût and parmesan.

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