This weekend’s dish to try is from a book that is fast becoming a favourite in my repertoire of recipe books – Travelling Diva: Recipes from Around the World by Ritu Dalmia. You’ll remember the book was part of the giveaways to celebrate my 100th post.
Again, this is something we tried at our Easter lunch party and it is subtle and sophisticated and a great addition to any appetiser line-up.
Chef Dalmia writes that this used to be part of the menu at her Delhi restaurant Diva and that guests have not stopped ordering it even now that it is no longer part of the menu.
Ritu Dalmia’s Mushroom Paté
From Travelling Diva: Recipes from Around the World
A few pieces of dry shiitake mushroom
250 g fresh button mushrooms, sliced
50 g butter
2 garlic cloves, chopped
2 onions, chopped
A splash of sherry or brandy
20 g Parmesan cheese
Salt to season
Pepper to season
Soak the dried shiitake mushrooms in hot water for 15 minutes. Once they are hydrated, slice them and retain 2 tbsp of the water in which they were soaked.
Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed frying pan over low heat. Add the garlic and onion and sauté till the onion becomes pink.
Add the sliced button and shiitake mushrooms, and fry, stirring constantly.
Add sherry or brandy and the reserved mushroom water.
Cook on high heat for 7 to 10 minutes until all the water has evaporated and the mushroom has browned and taken on a meaty texture.
In a food processor, blend the cooked mixture till it is a paste. Add Parmesan cheese and thyme, and season with salt and pepper.
Transfer to a clean, dry bowl, cover with cling wrap, and freeze for about 30 minutes before serving.
Serve on Melba toast, crackers or crusty bread.
Added note from Chef Dalmia:
You could give the paté a nutty texture by adding walnuts if you want, though I prefer the unadulterated taste of mushrooms.
And bonus 1: This is vegetarian!