Autumn, Winter, Main, Pasta

Epic Mushroom & Walnut Ragu

This is EPIC! It’s so tasty, the walnuts give the Ragu some needed bite and also makes its nutrient dense. Its full of the good stuff like porcini mushrooms and miso paste.

Mushrooms of all kinds even the button, are incredibly good for you and I am always looking for new ways to include them in mine and my family’s diets, without one particular member noticing much!

This is highly versatile, I served it with some freshly made pasta I hade leftover, however my favourite way is stuffed in those big shells and baked with topped with cheese (vegan ideally) until bubbling and bits of the pasta our crunchy and toasted.

My husband once said ‘you need to bag this one up and sell it’! maybe his right, but I will let you guys be the judge of that.



500g chestnut or another mushroom

250g walnuts

40g dried porcini mushrooms

1 large onion

2 medium carrots

2 celery sticks

2-3 bay leaves

A few fresh thyme sprigs

2 tbs light olive oil

4 garlic cloves

1 heaped tbs white miso paste

1 heaped tbs sundried or regular tomato paste

100ml red wine (optional)

1 tin chopped tomatoes

1 tbs tamari sauce

Salt and black pepper

To serve

Pasta of choice

Fresh basil

Vegan parmesan

Toasted pine nuts


Place the porcini mushrooms into a jug and top with 500ml boiling water and give them a swirl and set aside for 15 minutes.

In a large saucepan or casserole dish add the onions, celery, carrots, bay leaves, thyme sprigs and oil. Cook gentle until soft, the onions are translucent and lightly caramelised.

Whilst they are cooking, in a food processor or by hand chop the mushrooms so they are finely chopped or diced not to th a pulp, however.

Remove from the processor into a bowl and repeat with the walnuts. Set aside.

  1. The porcini can be drained through a fine sieve but do this over a bowl to ensure you keep their precious liquor.
  2. Finley chop the porcini mushrooms and set aside.
  3. When the vegetables are ready add the garlic and stir to combine and continue to cook for a minute or two.
  4. Turn the heat up a little and add the mushrooms and walnuts, stirring regularly, cooking and beginning to release their juices, approx. 5 minutes.
  5. Now add the porcini and stir to combine, followed by the miso paste and tomato puree, stir to combine and cook for a minute or two, before adding the red wine if using to de glaze the pan stirring continually until the alcohol evaporates.
  6. if you’re not using wine add the porcini liquid at this stage instead.
  7. Now add the porcini liquid and chopped tomatoes and stir well to combine, add a good tsp of sea salt, and freshly ground black pepper. Stir to combine and bring to boil and immediately reduce to a low heat.
  8. Fill the empty tomatoes tin half with water and swill around. You may want to use this to loosen the ragu at later stage. If you feel the ragu looks a little thick add some tomato water or vegetable stock.
  9. Cook on low for a least 30 minutes stirring often. Ideally an hour. If you are making this early in th day you can turn off the heat after an hour and cover and set aside until later, or even overnight.
  10. I like to bag this up and freeze a few portions.
  11. Serve with any pasta shape you like, and a sprinkle of toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, and vegan parmesan.

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