Mushrooms have a lot going on in the flavour and texture departments. They have a satisfying chewiness and can be either the star or a very dependable sidekick in a dish. One most important detail when cooking with mushrooms is getting their consistency right, neither a mush nor slightly undercooked pays them any tribute and results in a dish that is less than memorable.
This recipe brings together a whole variety of favours and textures, layered one on top of the other. It’s inspired by the classic Turkish döner kebab, where fresh salad, herbed sauces and grilled meat are layered together in a soft wedge of freshly baked bread. This version has mushrooms marinated in an aromatic spice base and a soft chapatti as the comforting base that holds the other layers together. You can skip making your own, and substitute with store-bought rotis or wraps. Make this vegan by skipping ghee and using non-dairy yoghurt.
Spiced mushroom rolls with tangy coleslaw and sumac yoghurt
300gm brown champignons, finely sliced
1 medium yellow onion, sliced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon Kashmiri red chilli
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1 garlic clove, peeled and finely sliced
1 cm stem of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
1 tablespoon ghee or vegetable oil
Salt to taste
200 gm sweetheart or pointy-headed cabbage, shredded
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon sugar
Salt to taste
1/2 cup yoghurt
1/2 teaspoon sumac
Salt to taste
1 cup atta or wholewheat flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 small cucumber, cut into 0.5 cm cubes
1 medium tomato, cut into 0.5 cm cubes
Mixed fresh herbs like thyme, basil and coriander
Start by marinating the mushrooms: In a large bowl, combine the mushrooms with the cumin, coriander and chilli. Use your hands to gently work the spices around the mushrooms and set aside to for 10 minutes.
To make the chapatti dough, mix the flour and salt together in a large bowl. Make a well in the centre and slowing adding water, knead into a soft, pliable dough. Cover and set aside.
Add the coleslaw ingredients together in a medium-sized bowl and mix well to combine. Cover and set aside.
Make the sumac yogurt by mixing together the yoghurt and sumac, along with a pinch of salt. Check for taste and adjust as necessary.
Heat the ghee or oil in a large pan on a medium flame. Once hot, add the ginger and garlic, fry for 10 seconds, then add the mushrooms. Cook, stirring frequently, until any water evaporates, about 5—6 minutes. Add the onions and salt to taste, stir well to combine and cook for a further 5 minutes. Add the thyme leaves, cook for 1 minute, then remove from heat and transfer to a bowl.
Whilst the mushrooms are cooking, get started on the chapattis. Set a flat griddle on a high flame. Divide the dough into four balls, and using a rolling pin and some flour, roll each out into a thin, even circle about 15cm in diameter. Once the griddle is hot, place a chapatti onto it, turn after about 1—2 minutes, and cook for a further 1—2 minutes on the other side. Once done, keep warm by wrapping it in a clean kitchen towel. Repeat for the remaining 3 chapattis.
To assemble each roll, place a chapatti on a large plate. Top with a quarter of the coleslaw, followed by a quarter of the mushrooms. Spoon over some sumac yogurt, and top with some of cucumber and tomato. Sprinkle over with fresh herbs, and serve immediately. To eat, fold the open ends towards each other like a taco and bite into one end.
Recipe by Benjamin Hübner, Text & Images: Vatsala Murthy