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Saturday, May 19, 2007

May 16, 2007: Mushroom paprikash (without dumplings)

My new favourite food blog is Yeah, That "Vegan" Shit, written by the sass-tastic Lindyloo. When I should be concentrating only on my work, I have been sneaking peaks at her archives, checking out the awsome vegan food she and her feller create each weekend, and enjoying her casual and entertaining prose. It was only a matter of time (less than a week, actually) before I'd be trying out one of her recipes, and in this autumn weather it was the hearty mushroom paprikash that I gravitated towards. I've rarely eaten and never prepared savoury dumplings before, so I was keen to have a go at them (as if mushrooms in paprika-spiked gravy wasn't enticing enough!). Unfortunately my dumplings were an absolute disaster! That unmarked jar of flour in the cupboard was always going to be a risk: I could see that it was probably wholemeal, and in hindsight I suspect that it was also self-raising. My innocent-looking dough balls fizzed to almost nothing in the boiling water, and boiled over onto the stove. The paprikash was still delicious without them, for dinner and then reheated and stuffed into a bread roll for lunch the next day.

I'm ashamed to admit that even with these incredible vegan recipes in front of me, I still lazily subbed some dairy (butter, sour cream and milk). I really need to seek and trial some of the vegan alternatives lurking around the supermarket, I know that at least some of them are there! I did, however, trial Sanitarium Tender (wheat gluten, aka seitan) Pieces for the first time. They're canned chunks of imitation red meat packed with a bit of gravy, not as rubbery as some mock meats but rather bland in taste. They suited this dish but really aren't necessary- fleshy mushroom chunks and soft onion loops are more flavoursome and can certainly hold their own.

Mushroom Paprikash

1/2 cup sour cream
2 teaspoons flour
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 large onion, sliced into rings
3 cloves garlic, minced
1.5 tablespoons paprika
a shake of chilli powder (if the paprika is sweet)
7 cups mushrooms, chopped into large chunks
1 vegetable stock cube, dissolved in 1 cup of hot water
1 x 415g can wheat gluten pieces (optional)

Combine the sour cream, flour, pepper and salt in a small bowl and set aside.

Heat the oil in a large pot, and cook the onions and garlic for a couple of minutes. Add the paprika and chilli and cook for a minute more, slathering it all over the onions. Add the mushrooms and get them coated in orange-spiced goodness too. Add the stock, bring to the boil, and then simmer for about 20 minutes.

Stir through the sour cream mixture and the seitan, if you're using it. Cook further just until heated through. Serve with pasta, bread or dumplings (if you're more skilled than I) - steamed green beans proved to be an excellent sidekick.


  1. I love the colour in the pic - such a wonderful rich red brown. I bought some smoked paprika today that I need a recipe for it to star in so this could be the one - and I love dumplings. I am not a fan of mock meat but wonder if tempeh might be a good substitute.

  2. Johanna, I'm sure tempeh would be great! I'm probably not going to bother with the mock meat again in this one, but the gravy's worth repeating. :-)

  3. This sounds like a wonderful winter dish. Gorgeous photo!

  4. Hey you two awesome people! Yes you :P

    I stumbled across your brilliant blog recently and all I can say is WHY didn't I find it back when I was Vegetarian?? The recipes are ace and your food discoveries wicked!

    I lived in Melbourne for 8 yrs and just reading about your eating adventures makes me reminisce.

    As much as I used to LOVE the mock meat (I'm chinese and it used to be a big part of my diet), I have to tell you... it's really unhealthy for you and if you can eventually stop eating it, you would be doing your body good. And I include that Sanitarium stuff (which also used to fill my plate frequently).

    I'm currently Raw Vegan and hope to stay as such. I know it's a big step but seeing as you're into a) health and b) helping the environment (am I right?) I suggest you look into having more raw foods in your diet. I was vegetarian for 10 years, vegan for 2 then went to raw and I've never felt better. It's absolutely beautiful too!

    Trust me, every time I visit Melbs, the temptations are difficult to resist because it truly is a foodie town. Lentil's curry platter pulls me off the raw wagon EVERY TIME! Hahaha

    Anyways, thanks for your wonderful blog and I hope I didn't come across too condescendingly :P

    Peace and Light

  5. Hi Miin! Thanks for the compliments, we're really glad you've enjoyed reading our blog. :-)

    We have been on a bit of a mock meat binge lately, and I think we're done with it for quite some time. I'm aware that it's salty and processed, and I think of it as a novelty and a bit of a junk food... unprocessed legumes are a far better way to get that protein!

    I've read a bit about raw diets and I'm impressed with your commitment! I try to be mindful in my eating but along with health and ethics, I have other more indulgent priorities - comfort and trying new things and the social/sharing aspect too. That said, I'm always on the lookout for new ways to enjoy fruit and veges, so I might have a wander through your blog for some raw ideas. :-) It's obviously got you feeling mighty fine!

  6. I know this is very late - BUT - I made your mushroom paprikash over the weekend, was divine! Didn't add Seitan cos I hate fake meat, but with Just the mushrooms it was perfect. I made dumplings, nokedli, and they turned out beautifully - although I probably cheated because I have a lot of Hungarian in my blood - you should try dumpling again, they're not too hard! Thanks for the recipe, it has been stuck on the kitchen fridge for many future uses!

  7. Cool, thanks! I've made this a few times since and never bother with the seitan any more, either. Perhaps I will try the dumplings next time, though they have me a little nervous. :-)