Stuffed Patty Pans with Black Trumpets
This vegan recipe for stuffed patty pans is so versatile you'll want to make it again and again. The patty pan is the perfect base for a savory couscous pilaf with black trumpets and leeks, making it the perfect summer side or vegan entrée.
Black Trumpets (Craterellus sp.)
I call black trumpets black mushroom gold for two reasons. First, these mushrooms are so tasty that it feels like you've hit the jackpot when you find them. Second, they are hard to find since they are masters at camouflage so it literally feels like finding a treasure! Photographed in South Bohemia, Czech Republic.
August is the perfect time for finding black trumpets. They have black funnel-shaped fruit bodies and often grow in clusters under beech, oak or other broad-leaved trees, especially in moss in moist spots on heavy calcareous soil. They come back in the same spots year after year, so if you find them, remember the spot! For more info on black trumpets, see my recipe for Black Trumpet Pasta.
Stuffed Patty Pans with Black Trumpets
Summer at our summer house in South Bohemia always means tons of squash and zucchini. My mom loves to grow all different kinds: the long and curvy tromboncino zucchini, the two-color zephyr summer squash, the cute little jack-be-little pumpkins (or JBLs as we like to call them) or the bright yellow sunburst summer squash with scalloped edges, aka the patty pan. Basically, we end up with a lot of different kinds and need to find ways to use them all up. And since it has been a really good mushroom season, we already had 2 delicious ingredients to work with for this recipe.
Black trumpets fruited early this year and I had to find ways to use all 5 pounds of them. I dried most of them since black trumpets gain flavor by drying, but I also love to eat them sautéed fresh. So my mom and I came up with this super healthy, vegan recipe for stuffed patty pans with couscous pilaf.
This recipe is very versatile. You can use any type of wild or store-bought mushrooms like boletes, oyster mushrooms, chanterelles, hen of the woods, or white buttons. For the squash, you can use patty pans or mini pumpkins, which have a bit more flavor and you don't have to roast them for that long to get them soft. To make the recipe gluten-free, substitute couscous for quinoa.
Please be extremely careful cooking and eating foraged mushrooms. Never eat a mushroom that you are not 100% sure of its ID. The best way to learn how to identify and forage for edible mushrooms in your area is to join a local mushroom club or go with a trusted mushroom identifier or a mycologist. Then, even if you are 100% sure of its ID and know it's an edible mushroom, always try small quantities of a new mushroom first before eating a large batch to make sure it sits with you well.
- Prep Time: 25 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- 8 medium-sized patty pan squashes
- 2 tsp vegetable oil + more for oiling patty pans
- 1 cup leeks (thinly sliced)
- 200 g (7 oz) black trumpets (roughly chopped)
- 1 clove garlic (pressed)
- ½ tbsp fresh thyme (chopped)
- 1 cup dry couscous
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 1½ cup + 1 tbsp chicken stock
- 1/3 cup dry white wine
- salt and pepper to taste
- fresh parsley or chives for garnish (chopped) optional
Fresh ingredients are the basis for yummy food. The leeks and patty pans came from our garden and I picked the black trumpets that morning in the woods surrounding the house.
- Preheat oven to 400 F (200 C). Lightly oil a baking sheet.
- Thinly chop leeks and roughly chop black trumpets.
- Slice off a tiny bit of the bloom end of the patty pan to create a level surface. Cut it in half and scoop out seeds and pulp.
- Lightly oil the cut side of each patty pan, season with salt and pepper, and place cut side down on the baking sheet. Bake in the oven about 30 minutes or until very soft. In my experience, patty pans take a long time to bake to be good.
- After placing the patty pans in the oven, heat up 1½ cup + 1 tbsp chicken stock in a pot.
- In a heavy bottom pan, sauté the leeks in 2 tsp vegetable oil for about 5 minutes, or until tender. Add black trumpets and sauté for about 5 minutes. Add 1 clove pressed garlic and ½ tbsp thyme to the pan and cook for 1 more minute. Add 1/3 cup white wine and cook until the wine is mostly evaporated. Season with salt and pepper and take off heat.
- Cook the couscous. Place the 1 cup dry couscous in a pan you can cover. Add 1 tsp olive oil and stir to coat. Pour the boiling chicken stock over the couscous and cover. Let rest for 5 minutes. Do not boil.
- Once the couscous is done, add to the skillet with the mushrooms and leeks. Stir to evenly combine.
- Remove the roasted patty pans from the oven, flip over the bottom halves and spoon the couscous pilaf evenly into each patty pan. Place the top half of the patty pan on top, like a little hat. You can add a little parsley or chives for added color. Serve immediately.
Let me know what you think in the comments! I'd love to hear from you. Head to my Instagram account @fungiwoman for daily posts about my mushroom adventures. Also, check out my shop for some mushroom-inspired products and sign up for the newsletter to get updates.
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