A hearty pie is a joy to eat when the weather is cold and you want to enjoy some comfort food. This vegan mushroom pie with sweet potato topping really fits the bill!
Mushroooms are an edible type of funghi that have been eaten by humans for centuries. To flourish and grow they need dark, damp conditions. So, around this time of year, if you go for a winter walk in woodland in the UK or another northern European country, you might notice them growing in the ground next to tree roots. Remember, if you decide to go foraging for mushrooms, make sure you go with someone who knows what to pick, as some can be poisonous!
There are many different types of mushrooms that you can use in this recipe. Big field mushrooms are really tasty, or you can use a combination of different types. Mushrooms are low in calories, fat, cholesterol and sodium, so are great to include in a healthy plant-based diet. The nutritional makeup varies, depending upon the mushroom variety. Common white mushrooms, which most of us can buy easily in the supermarket, are a dietary source of potassium, vitamin B6 and contribute to your daily fibre intake.
We use sweet potato for the mash topping, as sweet potatoes are a good source of sustainable energy (normal potatoes react more quickly in your body, giving you a higher, quicker peak in energy, followed by a drop. If you are interested in the effect of sugar on your body, read our article: sugar, the highs, lows and alternatives. Sweet potatoes can be either reddy-orange in colour (red flesh), or white and there are lots of different varieties. Both types of sweet potato make a lovely mash – if you use the white-flesh variety it will look the same as normal potatoes. If you can’t find sweet potato then feel free to swap them for normal white potatoes. Either way, to get a nice firm mash, make sure you drain the sweet potatoes well.
It does take some time to prepare this dish – making the mushroom filling takes at least one hour, and you also need to make the mash. However, once you have assembled the dish, you can pop it in the oven whilst you enjoy doing other things. We recommend making a big serving, so you can freeze a few portions for another day, as you will want to eat it again!
Cooking tip: Mushrooms tend to give out a lot of liquid when they are cooked. In the recipe we use the cooking liquid (with some flour) instead of butter, to make the base of the roux. This forms the base for the sauce, which makes it really tasty.
Time-saving tip: Whilst the oven is switched on to cook this pie, cut up some additional vegetables that can be roasted, like parsnip, carrot, courgette and cauliflower. Pop them into the oven, with a sprinkle of lemon juice, some herbs and water. You can use them to make a lovely roasted veggie soup for tomorrow! For inspiration, try our spicy roast parsnip soup recipe.
Vegan mushroom pie with sweet potato topping
Allergens: CELERY, MUSTARD
1 onion, finely chopped
1 stick celery, finely chopped
1 leek, sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 cups mushrooms, washed and sliced
2 tsp dried tarragon
2 tbsp corn flour
1 cup water (or homemade veggie stock)
1 cup unsweetened rice milk
2 tbsp lemon juice
Large handful fresh rosemary, finely chopped.
8 medium sweet potatoes, cut into chunks
2 tbsp mustard
2 tbsp nutritional yeast (can leave out if you don´t have it)
In a large pan cook the onion and celery for 10 minutes over a low heat until they start to soften – use water and add more as necessary to prevent sticking. Add the leek and cook for a further 5 minutes.
Add the garlic, mushrooms and dried tarragon and cook for 5 minutes until the mushrooms start to soften.
Add the corn flour and stir well to coat the veggies. Slowly add the water (or veggie stock) and rice milk stirring well. The sauce should thicken – stir in more corn flour as needed (make a roux first then add). Then add the lemon juice and bay leaf. Cover and cook over a low heat for at least one hour.
Taste. Add more mustard or tarragon, lemon juice as necessary. Remove the bay leaf. Stir in the fresh rosemary.
Meanwhile, make the sweet potato mash by cooking the sweet potato in boiling water. Drain well, then mash. Stir in the mustard and nutritional yeast.
Place the mushroom mixture into a pie dish or roasting tin. Top with the mashed sweet potato.
Place beneath a grill (or in a medium oven) and cook so that the topping becomes brown. Serve hot.
If you are short on time, serve with some quick cooked frozen garden peas, for a complete meal. For something a little more adventurous (and to make use of the oven being on), then try our vegan oven-roasted squash, courgette, red onion and cinnamon recipe.
If you have enjoyed this vegan mushroom pie then come and try our lovely Autumn-Winter menu currently being served here at the retreat. Read about the plant-based food served at La Crisalida Retreats here.
I hope you make the time this month to head into the kitchen and create some delicious food for yourself, family and friends to enjoy. There are lots more vegan recipes on our health and wellbeing blog. Let me know how you get on!