Be different – try some craft beer and mushrooms recipes

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THIS week is all about Easter, wherever you look…hot cross buns, pickled fish, roast leg lamb…all delicious, all traditional. But it is a long weekend, so there are four days of cooking and feasting ahead. Why not try something different with these SA craft beer and mushroom dish pairings? With thanks to the South African Mushroom Farmers’ Association.

Cheese & Mushroom Loaded Baguette

Serves 4, pictured above

Ingredients

  • 1 large fresh white baguette, cut into 4 individual portions
  • 3 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 brown onion, sliced
  • 1 green bell pepper, sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, sliced
  • 250g portabello mushrooms, thickly sliced
  • 1 tsp mixed dried herbs
  • 1 cup / 125g mozzarella cheese, grated
  • Olive oil
  • Salt and pepper, to taste 

Method

  • Set oven to grill setting and allow to heat.
  • Slice the baguette portions in half and spread the softened butter on the inside of both halves. Toast the bread either in a pan over medium low heat or on the top rack of an oven until golden brown and crisp. Set aside.
  • In a large pan sauté the mushroom slices in olive oil until golden brown. Season with mixed herbs, salt and pepper. Set aside.
  • In the same pan saute the onion and peppers for 5 min until they have softened.
  • To construct the sandwich lay the bottom of each baguette portion on a baking sheet. Begin layering the onions and peppers, followed by a sprinkling of grated cheese, then mushrooms, then another sprinkle of cheese. Repeat until all toppings have been used or you have reached your desired level of filling.
  • Place the sandwich halves in the oven under the grill. Grill for 2-3 min or until the cheese has melted. Remove from the oven, top with the other baguette half and serve.

Beer Battered Mushrooms

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 500g mixed mushrooms, sliced and whole (portobello, portabellini & white button) 
  • 200g tempura flour
  • 300ml very cold light beer (fruity light Weiss) 
  • 1L neutral cooking oil, for frying
  • Salt and pepper, to taste 

For serving

  • Aioli
  • Dijon mustard
  • Fresh lemon wedges 

Method

  • In a large pot heat cooking oil to 180˚C.
  • In a mixing bowl combine the tempura flour and cold beer, add a pinch of salt and whisk until smooth. 
  • Dip each mushroom and allow the excess batter to drip off before being placed gently into the hot oil. Fry for 3-4 min or until golden brown on all sides. Remove the mushrooms from the oil and allow to drain on paper towel. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve hot with lemon wedges, aioli and mustard on the side.

Mushroom, Leek & Lager Beef Pie

Serves 6

Ingredients

  • 1 kg beef chuck, cut into 2.5 cm chunks 
  • 4 leeks, washed very well and sliced
  • 2 stalks celery, finely sliced
  • 2 carrots, finely sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • ⅓ cup flour
  • 300ml lager
  • 2 cups / 500ml beef stock
  • Handful fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 500g thickly sliced button or portabellini mushrooms 
  • 1 – 2 sheets puff pastry (enough to cover pie)
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • Salt and pepper, to taste 
  • Olive oil 

Method

  • Season beef with salt and pepper.
  • Heat a drizzle of oil in a large heavy based pot. Add the beef and brown all over. Cook in batches to avoid the beef sweating. Set aside.
  • Turn heat down to medium and add a fresh drizzle of olive oil. Add leeks, celery, carrots and garlic. Cook until softened and sweet.
  • Add flour and stir through coating all the vegetables.
  • Add beer, beef stock, thyme and bay leaves and stir to mix well. 
  • Bring to simmer and then cover. 
  • Reduce heat to low and allow to cook for 2 hours until the beef if tender. 
  • Remove the lid and allow sauce to reduce until thickened. 
  • Add mushrooms and mix them in to evenly distribute. 
  • Taste and adjust seasoning. 
  • Preheat oven to 200˚C. 
  • Pour pie filling into a pie/ baking dish. (Roughly 25 x 20 x 4.5 cm)
  • Top with puff pastry. Cut out a few steam holes. Brush with egg wash and bake for 30-40 minutes until the pastry is deeply golden brown and cooked through. 
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