Mushroom Bourguignon (vegan)
Mushroom Bourguignon is the perfect autumnal feast. It is rich, warm and comforting making it the perfect dish for cold days and nights.
French cuisine made vegetarian and vegan friendly
This delicious stew has all the characteristics of the traditional dish named after the Bourgogne (or Burgundy) region of France. Red wine, mushrooms, shallots, onion, carrots and a “bouquet garni” are cooked low and slow to develop a rich gravy that will have your mouth watering as it cooks. Traditionally this recipe would have been made with beef but to make it suitable for vegans and vegetarians I’ve swapped the meat for extra mushrooms!
Which mushrooms work best?
You can use any mushrooms you like but I think I’ve cracked the perfect combination: 1/3 portobello mushrooms cut into thick strips, 1/3 chestnut button mushrooms kept whole and 1/3 wild mushrooms. The result is a complex, deep umami flavour and a range of textures in each spoonful. I like to add the wild mushrooms at the end of the cooking and fry them in butter first to make sure they aren’t overpowered by the rest of the dish (they look super pretty too!) I used oyster mushrooms and girolles as they are my favourite. Porcini and trumpet mushrooms would also work well too.
What’s in the sauce?
For the sauce you’ll need a decent bottle of red wine (extra points if you pick one from Burgundy!) If you are planning to drink red win alongside the dish I recommend sticking with the same bottle so make sure you’ve got a couple in. Of course you’ll need to check that the red wine is vegan – it’s so easy to forget!
As well as the red wine the gravy also includes a little tomato puree and a mushroom based stock. Rather than using a generic vegetable stock I like to add even more mushroom intensity by soaking dried wild mushrooms in water and adding this to the sauce. The classic combination of bay leaves, thyme and sage are add to make the gravy more aromatic.
What other veggies are in the stew?
There are a lot of mushrooms in this dish. There’s no mistaking that mushrooms are the star but pearl onions and chantennay carrots add a little sweetness to help balance it. I wouldn’t be tempted to add other vegetables as they will change the characteristics of what is otherwise a simple but delicious meal.
Although not technically a vegetable, I also add puy lentils to my mushroom bourguignon. I love the nutty, earthy flavour they bring. They also bulk it out making it a substantial bowlful which can be enjoyed all on its own.
Check out my serving suggestions below if you do want to serve extra vegetables (and carbohydrates) alongside.
- 300 millilitres water freshly boiled
- 30 grams dried wild mushrooms
- 50 grams non-dairy butter
- 12 shallots
- 200 grams chantenay carrots
- 250 grams portobello mushrooms cut into thick slices
- 250 grams chestnut mushrooms kept whole or cut in half depending on how large they are
- 4 cloves garlic minced
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 300 millilitres red wine
- 4 sprigs thyme
- 4 bay leaves
- 4 sage leaves
- 250 grams puy lentils pre-cooked
- salt and pepper to taste
- 250 grams fresh wild mushrooms e.g. girolles, oyster mushrooms, trumpet mushrooms etc.
Pour the freshly boiled water over the dried mushrooms to rehydrate them and place to one side.
Heat 1 tbsp olive oil and 25g of the butter in a heavy bottomed pan.
Once the butter has melted add the shallots and chantenay carrots and cook for 5 minutes or until they begin to soften a little.
Next add the sliced portobello mushrooms and the chestnut mushrooms to the pan and cook for another 5 minutes.
Add in the minced garlic, tomato puree and flour and stir to ensure the vegetables are well coated.
Pour the wine into the pan and stir gently until the sauce is smooth.
Add the water and re-hydrated wild mushrooms to the pan along with the thyme, bay leaves, sage and puy lentils.
Simmer for 25-30 minutes or until the sauce has reduced down and the veg are cooked though.
Season to taste.
Melt the remaining butter in another pan and add the fresh wild mushrooms. Fry for 5-10 minutes until they have coloured but are still firm.
Add the wild mushrooms to the main pan before serving.
To make the shallots easier to peel, place them in a bowl and cover with hot water for 5 minutes before peeling.
You could happily enjoy a big bowl of Mushroom Bourguignon on its own but here are some of my favourite additions to serve on the side:
- Crushed or roasted potatoes for a hearty Sunday lunch.
- Creamy parsnip mash for a decadent dinner party dish.
- Sauteed kale, wilted spinach or steamed green beans to balance out the rich gravy.
- Big chunks of white crusty bread for dipping on a cold night.
I can see this recipe being made almost weekly now that the days and nights are getting colder. Will you be joining me?