Recipe: Ruth Pretty’s Portobello Mushrooms with Butter Bean Mash, Macadamia Nut Crumble & Rustic Pesto

This rustic vegetarian side dish is packed with flavour and texture. 

Words & recipes: Ruth Pretty  Styling & photographs: Carolyn Robertson


250g (6) medium-large portobello mushrooms, stalks trimmed and caps wiped with a damp cloth
400g can butter beans, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons Roasted Garlic (recipe follows)
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 teaspoon flaky sea salt
pinch of freshly ground black pepper
Macadamia Nut Crumble (recipe follows)
Rustic Pesto (recipe follows)


Heat oven to 170°C. Grease a low-sided baking tray with a little olive oil. Put the mushrooms on top, stalk side up.

Put the butter beans, Roasted Garlic, olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper in a food processor and whiz until smooth. Divide this mixture between the mushrooms and sprinkle each one with a heaped tablespoon of Macadamia Nut Crumble.

Bake for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the mushrooms are cooked and the crumble is golden brown. Garnish with Rustic Pesto.

Roasted Garlic

This is a great standby to have in the fridge. Heat the oven to 180°C. Trim the tops of 4 to 5 bulbs of garlic to expose the cloves. Cook in a small pot of boiling water for 10 minutes, then drain and discard any loose skin. Put the garlic in a small roasting dish, prick all over with a fork and drizzle generously with oil. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon fresh thyme leaves, 1 teaspoon salt, and ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Roast for 40 minutes or until the cloves start popping out of their skins. Cool and store in the fridge. Squeeze garlic from cloves as required.

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Macadamia Nut Crumble

Toss together 120g roughly chopped macadamia nuts, 1 tablespoon finely chopped chives, 1 tablespoon finely chopped italian parsley, 1 teaspoon finely chopped thyme, 3 tablespoons rice flour, 1½ tablespoons cornflour, ¼ teaspoon flaky sea salt, pinch of freshly ground black pepper and 2 tablespoons olive oil.

Rustic Pesto

Take 3 cups of mixed small greens and herbs such as rocket, chives, silverbeet, spinach and kale, with small amounts of nasturtium leaves/flowers, calendula petals, oregano, marjoram and thyme.

Put them in a blender or food processor with 2 tablespoons lightly toasted sunflower seeds, 2 tablespoons lightly toasted pumpkin seeds, 3 cloves chopped garlic, ½ cup olive oil, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon vinegar, ½ teaspoon flaky salt and a pinch of ground black pepper. Whiz to form a purée, then transfer to a bowl. Smooth the top and brush with a little extra olive oil.

NZ Life and Leisure This article first appeared in NZ Life & Leisure Magazine.
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