Growing your own mushrooms can be a great way to extend your year round growing efforts. But what should you do with the mushrooms you have grown. To inspire you to make the most of any mushroom harvest, here are five generic mushroom meal ideas for polytunnel mushroom growers:
This Russian-inspired recipe is a wonderful autumnal meal. Harvest the required mushrooms, vegetables and herbs. Sauté onions and garlic in vegetable oil. Add vegetable stock, winter greens, mushrooms and winter squash and simmer for around 15 minutes. Add soured cream, paprika and parsley and simmer for a further five minutes. Chop and boil some potatoes or some rice, and serve.
Mushrooms also lend themselves to use in a wide range of curries. One family-friendly option is a mild and creamy korma. Depending on your cooking skills and experience, you can mix spices yourself or use a korma curry paste. Simmer spices with coconut milk, ginger and garlic, then add your mushrooms and any other seasonal vegetables you wish and serve with rice.
Lentil bakes are a vegetarian staple and a wonderful way to get plenty of protein and other nutrients without meat or dairy. Sauté onions and garlic, then add red lentils, vegetable stock/ water, mushrooms, carrots and green, leafy vegetables. Boil until the red lentils are soft and then transfer to a casserole dish and bake in the oven until the top is gently crisped.
Mushroom & Vegetable Soup
Mushrooms and mushroom stock make an excellent base for a mushroom and vegetable soup. The great thing is that with the complex yet delicate mushroom flavours, you can add almost any seasonal vegetables that you wish to make a soup that suits you.
Mushroom Paté Bruscetta
For a dinner party or special occasion, or simply for a week day lunch, mushroom paté can be a vegetarian go-to. Simply take your cooked mushrooms and blend them into a smooth paste which can then be seasoned to taste and spread onto bruscetta, or used as a sandwich filling with some seasonal salad.
These are just a few of the many ways that you can use mushrooms grown in a polytunnel to create a range of delicious dishes. When mushrooms are on the menu, you should never be short of ideas for family meals. Mushrooms are good for you, and are versatile ingredients that can be cooked and eaten in a huge range of different ways – both as the stars of the show and as ancillary ingredients in a wide array of dishes.
How do you use the mushrooms that you grow? Please share your mushroom recipe ideas for autumn in the comments below.
Elizabeth Waddington is a writer and green living consultant living in Scotland. Permaculture and sustainability are at the heart of everything she does, from designing gardens and farms around the world, to inspiring and facilitating positive change for small companies and individuals.
She also works on her own property, where she grows fruit and vegetables, keeps chickens and is working on the eco-renovation of an old stone barn.