Mushroom Stroganoff

A delicious mushroom concoction in a delectable creamy sauce.

Vegetarian. Hands-on time: 20 mins. Total time: 20 mins.

Contributed by Janey Macleod (May 2011).

Mushroom Stroganoff

Photo © Veg World

This is a vegetarian version of the traditional Russian dish, in which mushrooms are used in place of meat - with surprisingly good results. It's not particularly difficult to prepare, and the results are always impressive.

You can serve the dish as a main course with rice (the quantities given here will make two generous servings). Or, for a more authentic Russian touch, serve it with kasha (buckwheat). It also works well as a side dish or an accompaniment.

A stroganoff is traditionally made with smetana, but you can also use sour cream or crème fraîche. But check the label. Some low-fat versions of those products contain gelatin, which is not suitable for vegetarians. (Personally, I prefer to use the full-fat product, but that's a matter of choice.)



Start by soaking the dried mushrooms in half a cup (120 ml, 4 fl oz) of boiling water.

While the mushrooms are soaking, heat a little oil in a large pan, and add a knob of butter. Add the fresh mushrooms and garlic, and sauté for a few minutes until the mushrooms are nicely browned.

Remove the mushrooms from the pan and set aside. Add a little more oil and butter to the pan.

Remove and discard the stalks and the outer leaves from the scallions. Chop the trimmed scallions into slices and add to the pan. Fry for a few minutes until soft.

Add the flour. Cook for a few more moments, stirring gently. Remove the pan from the heat.

By now, the water in which the dried mushrooms were soaking should be rich and dark. Drain off this liquid and add it to the pan, along with the wine (if you are not using wine, add a similar amount of water or vegetable stock instead). Return the pan to the heat, bringing the liquid to the boil. Stir for a few moments as the sauce thickens. If necessary, stir in a little more water to prevent the sauce becoming too thick.

Add both the batches of mushrooms, along with the cream or crème fraîche, basil and seasoning. Cook for another minute or so to ensure that everything is hot, then serve.

Note on quantities and temperatures:
Quantities are given in American (cups), imperial (oz, fl oz) and metric (g, ml) units. Do not mix the units - use one or other system throughout the recipe.
See also How much does a cup weigh?
oz = ounces, fl oz = fluid ounces, g = grams, ml = milliliters, tsp = teaspoons, tbsp = tablespoons.
Oven temperatures are given in degrees F (Fahrenheit) and C (Celsius).
For fan-assisted ovens, reduce the temperature by 20F or 10C.