Bushpepper and Parmesan crackers and Mushroom pate

ImageSpring has sprung the grass is riz I’m wonderin’ where the party is… perhaps the answer is anywhere that these treats are being served!

We had a great Tassievore cook off for our photo-shoot last weekend, and these were my humble offerings. I have since trotted them out for two other house guests and am at risk of making my family and friends highly bored of them before the summer is here. But at least they are still new and exciting in Tassievore land.

I tried to channel our lovely photographer Jasmine Pettersen when taking the shot (her tip is to take food pics from above) but, clearly,  I still have a huge amount to learn. Perhaps not taking the photo on the dodgy old fold out table will be my first note to self. Anyway hopefully the snap is enough for you to get the idea and party inspiration.

While I think of it, don’t forget to keep an eye out for the result of our photo shoot with Jasmine – the pictures will appear in the next few weeks. They are set to be gorgeous as Jasmine only uses film, which gives the photos a unique look in these digital days, plus she has a gift for the art of photography.

On to the recipes!

Bush Pepper and Parmesan crackers

  • 150g (1 cup) plain flour
  • 2 tsp finely grated Ashgrove or Elgaar parmesan/grana
  • Pinch or two or ground Tasmanian bush pepper
  • 80ml (1/3 cup) lukewarm water

Preheat oven to 200°C. Line 2 large baking trays with non-stick baking paper (if you want to be safe, but the crackers are quite floury and don’t generally stick if you work quickly).

Sift the flour into a large bowl. Stir in the parmesan and bush pepper.

Use a round-bladed knife to gradually mix the water into the flour mixture, using a cutting motion, until the mixture just comes together. Turn onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth.

Divide the dough into 16 equal portions. Use your hands to roll each portion into a ball. Roll each ball out on a lightly floured surface as flat as you can – should get to around 8cm-diameter disc. Cut each round into quarters, sixths or eighths depending on your preferred style – a pizza roller cutter is handy for this bit.

Place the flattened dough on trays. Bake in preheated oven for around 8 minutes or until golden patches appear. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Mushroom pate

  • 40g butter (i used Ashgrove unsalted)
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 500g mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon plain flour
  • 1 tablespoon thyme leaves (picked mine fresh thanks to a thoughtful housewarming gift)
  • 1/4 cup red wine (pinot from friends at winemaking tasmania worked well)
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream (but i used yoghurt and it worked fine!)
  • Extra thyme leaves, to garnish

Melt butter in a saucepan over medium heat. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 4 minutes or until tender. Add mushrooms. Stir to combine. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes or until mushrooms are soft.

Sprinkle flour and thyme over mushrooms, stirring until well combined.

Whisk together wine and yoghurt. Pour over mushroom mixture, stirring. Cook for 3 minutes or until sauce comes to the boil. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl. Refrigerate until cold.

Process mushroom mixture in a food processor until smooth. Spoon into a bowl. Top with thyme.

Serve with bush pepper and parmesan crackers and enjoy your spring celebrations!

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