Do you forage for wild things, like mushrooms? This recipe was created after foraging with the experts. I don't recommend doing it on your own because we don't want to lose you! Hunting for mushrooms is one of my pleasures and I don't get to do it frequently enough. This recipe was created after a hunt where we found a copious amount of a mushroom called "Hen-of-the-Woods," or Maitake. Ground nuts are used for flavor and filler. Just take some whole nuts, toast in a hot pan, then pulse in a food processor, or purchase them already ground.
1 nice big piece of Maitake (Grifola frondosa), about 2 cups
2-3 shallots, minced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons olive oil or other nut oil
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves, minced
1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves, minced
1/2 teaspoon celery seeds
Dash hot sauce
Black pepper, freshly ground
1/2 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup ground hazelnuts
1/4 cup breadcrumbs, preferably fresh
1 teaspoon lemon juice
a few scrapings of nutmeg, optional
Clean off the Maitake, or other mushrooms (you can create this with an assortment of wild mushrooms as well), by dusting away any leaves or forest matter and wash thoroughly. Slice into small pieces.
Saute the shallots and garlic in a combination of butter and olive oil.
Sauteing Shallots and Garlic
Olive oil and butter
Add the mushrooms and saute for about 15 minutes, until they release their moisture and are cooked through. While stirring add the fresh herbs, celery seeds and a splash or two of Port and Vodka. Cook another 5 minutes. Add a bit of salt and pepper. This might look a dry but don't worry.
Thyme and Rosemary
Mushrooms added to the shallots and garlic, celery seeds, herbs, Port, Vodka, salt and pepper and saute.
Port and Vodka
Coarse Grey Sea Salt
In a separate pan, dry toast the ground almonds, hazelnuts and breadcrumbs.
Ground almonds, hazelnuts, breadcrumbs toasting
Put everything into a food processor and pulse to puree, add a little bit of extra virgin olive oil, water and several pieces of butter, lemon juice and some freshly scraped nutmeg. The mixture should be smooth. Add enough water to make a creamy mixture. Not too tight and not too loose. Taste. Adjust seasonings.
Everything in the food processor.
The mixture. Nice and smooth.
If you don't have any Port or Vodka in your pantry just add a dash of honey and a bit more water, or use a good dry Sherry. You don't have to run out and purchase some just to make this recipe.
However, that said, sipping a bit of Port or Sherry, or Vodka, with friends, while enjoying this pate would add a great deal to everyone's day. Bon Appetit.