Porcini Mushroom Balls with Mash

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cooking time: 30 minutes
Serves: 4 (16-18 balls)

These mushroom stuffing balls are packed full of festive flavours. Serving these with parsnip mash and cranberry sauce makes a quirky, vegetarian alternative to your typical Christmas dinner.


For the balls

  • 500g mushrooms, mix of flat and chestnut
  • 25g porcini mushrooms, soaked, drained and finely chopped
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 1 stick celery, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped or minced
  • 5 sprigs thyme, leaves removed
  • 1 tsp white pepper
  • 90g fresh sourdough breadcrumbs
  • 1 egg
  • 100g pecans, roughly chopped
  • 1 small bunch parsley, finely chopped
  • 1 lemon, zest only (juice reserved for mash)
  • 180g brie, cut into 1.5cm cubes

For the parsnip mash

  • 650g parsnips, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 300g whole milk
  • 1/2 lemon, juice
  • 3 tbsp olive oil

To serve

  • Cranberry sauce


  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan.
  2. Heat a tbsp olive oil in a large frying pan, then add the onions and celery and cook until soft, about 10 mins. Place the mushrooms into a food processor and pulse a couple of times until finely chopped (but not mushy, you can also chop by hand). Add the mushrooms to the pan with the chopped dried porcini mushrooms, garlic and thyme and cook for 10 mins.
  3. Transfer the mushroom mix to a bowl and allow to cool slightly before adding the bread, egg, pecans, parsley and lemon zest. Taste and season. When cool, form the mix into balls, making a small hole in the middle for a cube of brie. They should be the size of golf balls. Pan fry in a large saucepan for a couple of minutes until browning, then transfer to a baking tray in the oven for a further 10 minutes.
  4. Make the parsnip mash by placing the parsnips and milk in a pan and bringing to the boil. Cook for 20 minutes until tender, drain and add to a food processor, along with the lemon juice and seasoning. Gradually trickle the olive oil is as the blades are moving. Serve the mushroom balls on a bed of parsnip mash with cranberry sauce.

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