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Mains, Vegetarian

Wild mushroom ragout

Wild mushroom ragout
Mel Melcon / Los Angeles Times

Like far too many cooks, I've gotten used to thinking of true wild mushrooms as the bookends of winter. Between fall porcini and spring morels I simply settle for cultivated shiitakes and portabellos -- half the flavor is better than ... Read more

Total time: 30 minutes | Serves 4
  • 1 1/2 pounds mixed wild mushrooms
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 2 leeks, white part only, thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse sea salt, plus more to taste
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 1 bay leaf
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine
  • 1/2 cup stock (chicken or vegetable)
  • 1/2 cup creme fraiche (plus a little more if desired)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Step 1Clean the mushrooms and cut them into chunks of roughly even size.

Step 2Melt the butter in a large shallow saucepan over medium heat. Add the leeks, sprinkle with salt and cook, stirring often, until softened, 5 to 8 minutes.

Step 3Add the mushrooms and stir to mix well. Add the thyme, bay leaf and cayenne pepper and mix well. Add the wine and cook, stirring, until the liquid is reduced to a glaze.

Step 4Add the stock and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender, about 15 minutes (cooking time will depend on variety and age of mushrooms).

Step 5Stir in the creme fraiche and heat through. (Add more if you want more liquid.) Taste and add more salt if needed. Season well with pepper and serve.

Note: This can be served alone, in a bowl like a meat stew, or as a sauce over polenta, fresh pasta or white rice.

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