Paid partnership with Opies Foods
Pickled walnuts are a quintessential British food, with a much-loved following, me included.
If you haven’t tried them before than you might be surprised to know they are not hard and crunchy like you might expect from a regular walnut, but have a soft firmness to the texture, with an earthy richness and dark and tangy liquor that is sweet and lightly spiced.
These qualities make for a very versatile cooking ingredient, that’s not just for cheese and charcuterie, but are such tasty and surprising additions to pies, stews, quiches and salads. The spiced vinegar adds a great depth to dressings, sauces and gravies. This also means you can easily make use of the whole jar.
Pickled Walnuts are the unsung hero in my Mushroom & Ale Cobbler, adding a rich umami depth of flavour that can sometimes be lacking in vegan cooking.
Opies Pickled Walnuts can be found in all major supermarkets in the pickle aisle and cost around £3 a jar.
For more exciting ways to use them head over to @opiesfoods on Facebook or Instagram, or follow this link to their website
- Prep time:40 minutes
- Cook time:30 minutes
2 tbs light oil
700g baby or regular chestnut mushrooms
1 onion diced
3 garlic cloves crushed
40g porcini mushrooms
2 bay leaves
A few sprigs of thyme
3 tbs plain flour
2 tsp marmite
2 tsp tamari sauce
2-3 Opies pickled walnuts roughly chopped
1 veggie stock pot or stock cube
Lots of freshly ground black pepper
350g self raising flour
200g chilled plant based butter
2 tsp mustard powder
3 tbs mixed chopped herbs, parsley, chives, thyme, dill or rosemary will all work
1 pickled walnut finely chopped (optional)
1 tsp sea salt
Juice 1 lemon
2-4 tbs cold water
- Add the porcini to a bowl and cover with 500ml of boiling water and set aside.
- In a large deep sided frying pan, add the oil and onions and Sautee until soft and translucent. Add in the bay leaves, thyme and mushrooms. Halve or quarter any large ones.
- Cook on medium to high until a little browned and beginning to soften, reduce the heat and add the garlic and cook for a further minute.
- Add in the flour and stir to coat the mushrooms, turn the heat up a little and add the Ale, it should bubble a little, de glaze the pan and thicken to coat the mushrooms.
- Now drain the porcini through a sieve into a jug and add the liquor to the mushrooms. Stir to combine and allow to come to a boil and the reduce the heat to a low simmer.
- Stir in the marmite and tamari, add lots of freshly ground black pepper and the stock pot or cube.
- Finally, roughly chop the porcini and them to the mushrooms along with the chopped pickled walnuts. Stir to combine and taste for seasoning.
- Pre heat the oven to 180C Fan.
- Whilst the mushrooms are simmer very gentle make the cobbler topping.
- Combine the flour, herbs, mustard powder and salt in a bowl.
- Chop the butter into cubes and rub the mixture together to form lumpy breadcrumbs.
- Make a well in the centre and add the lemon juice, chopped walnut and 2 tbs cold water, carefully bring dough together until it forms a ball, do not over mix. Add more water if needed.
- Turn the dough onto a floured surface and roll out to roughly 2 cm thick, cut into rounds and bring the leftover dough back together and repeat until you have 8 rounds. Set aside.
- Check the mushrooms for seasoning and empty into a baking dish, top with the cobbler topping and place bay leaves between each biscuit.
- Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the biscuit topping has risen and is lightly golden, the mushrooms will also be bubbling.
- Serve with your choice of vegetables and maybe some boiled or mashed potatoes.