You could substitute the buckwheat for any firm grain – barley would also work a treat – something with a lovely nutty texture to complement the mushrooms. This one falls into minimum effort, maximum outcome for the meat-free win.
2½ cups mixed mushrooms, left whole
2 tbsp thyme leaves
2½ tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp olive oil
½ brown onion, finely diced
½ carrot, finely diced
1 celery stick, finely sliced
1 garlic clove, crushed
1 cup finely diced mushrooms
1 cup buckwheat
2 cups vegetable stock
½ cup flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped (plus a few to scatter)
½ cup oregano leaves, finely chopped
a few small salad leaves to scatter (optional – I used salad burnett)
about 1 cup finely grated parmesan (I used a Microplane)
1. Preheat oven to 170C fan-forced (190C conventional). Add the mushrooms to a lined roasting tray and top with the thyme leaves, olive oil and a generous seasoning of salt and pepper. Use your hands to toss to coat. Roast for 20-30 minutes until the mushrooms have taken on a golden hue across their bases.
2. For the pilaf, place a medium saucepan over low heat. Add the oil and once warmed through add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic and mushrooms and cook for 5-10 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent, and the carrot is soft.
3. Add the buckwheat and cook, turning for about 1 minute, just for the grains to toast and take on the flavour of the vegetables. Add the stock and turn the heat to low. Simmer for about 20 minutes – you will need to give it the odd stir, just to keep an eye on it. Cook until the liquid has mostly evaporated and the buckwheat, while still firm, is cooked through.
4. Add most of the parmesan and stir through. Add the herbs and stir again to combine.
5. Dollop buckwheat mixture onto plates. Top with roasted mushrooms and scatter with any additional herbs and salad leaves. Season with salt and pepper and serve with the extra parmesan.