It’s Fall! Just in the last week the nights have been cooler and the air has been dryer, and even though it’s still in the 80’s during the day the season is definitely changing! I’m a very seasonal cook; I don’t eat fresh peaches in January, and I don’t cook winter squash in June, so it’s a big deal for me when the new fall produce starts showing up at the farmers market! Mushrooms aren’t really a fall thing necessarily, but the hearty, warm dishes I cook with them, brimming with sage and rosemary, definitely make you think of sweater-weather.
I got the idea for this recipe from a recipe on Pinterest, but on closer inspection I did not like the original filling, so I made my own. It was fabulous! Definitely could be a great option as a vegan entree for Thanksgiving guests (or your own celebration, of course), or it would make a great appetizer if you sliced it more thinly. My husband thought it could use a sauce, but we couldn’t really think of what would be appropriate with the texture, so if you think of something, please let me know in the comments!
Don’t let the Phyllo dough scare you, it’s not really that hard to work with as long as you don’t let it dry out!
Mushroom Strudel cooktime: about an hour, serves 3-4
- 8oz mushrooms, chopped roughly
- 1/2 of a globe eggplant, peeled and diced
- 1 small onion, or the white off one leek
- 1/4 tsp thyme (I used whole dried thyme, but you could use 2 tsp fresh)
- 1/4 tsp rosemary
- 2-3 leaves of fresh sage, chopped (optional)
- 1 clove of garlic
- 1 TBSP Braggs Liquid Aminos or soy sauce
- 1/2c fresh bread crumbs (I put two slices of stale white bread in the food processor. Not strictly necessary, but it helps the texture)
- 1/2c pecans or walnuts. I soaked these in warm water while I made the rest of the filling
- generous, frequent pinches of salt and pepper
- olive oil for sauteing
- 10 sheets of Phyllo dough, defrosted. Don’t unwrap them until you are prepared to fill the strudel.
- melted butter/spread (about 3 TBSP), and or cooking spray
- dry breadcrumbs
In a large saute pan, heat some olive oil then add your eggplant and a few pinches of salt. Start chopping you onion, add that next, followed by the mushrooms and another pinch of salt. When the veggies are softening and starting to brown, add your garlic and herbs and Liquid Aminos. Cook another 2 minutes until fragrant then, scoop into the bowl of a food processor fitted with a chopping blade. Add your fresh breadcrumbs and pecans. Pulse the mixture a few times until everything is chopped and it is just starting to clump, but not too much! You don’t want a paste. Taste the filing and add more salt, pepper, or Liquid Aminos if desired.
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F
Open your Phyllo dough and unroll it onto a baking sheet, but don’t remove the plastic liner. Use it to cover as much of the flat dough as you can. Damped a clean, lint-free tea towel and drape it over the whole baking pan to keep the dough from drying out.
Melt your butter/spread, and lay out a sheet of dough onto a large baking sheet. Using a pastry brush, gently dot and brush a light layer of butter over the dough. You can also use cooking spray for this, but it’s not as tasty. I use a combo if I only have a little spread or I’m in a hurry. After you brush the button on, sprinkle the dough with dried breadcrumbs. Lift up another sheet of dough and layer it over the first and repeat the butter and breadcrumbs routine. Repeat until you have 4 sheets.
Spoon your filling onto the dough creating a long stripe about an inch or two in from the edge of your dough. I made my filling about an inch and a half thick. Roll your dough over the filling and across the rest of the dough, creating a log. Position it with the seam down, and flatten the edges. Brush it with butter and sprinkle it with breadcrumbs. Repeat.
For the last bit of filling I used two sheets of dough and rolled my strudel shortways instead of longways.
Score your serving sizes with a sharp knife. It’s easier to cut without shattering the dough if you do this.
Bake your strudel for 20-25 minutes, or until golden brown. Enjoy!