Smoky shiitake mushroom, tomato and avocado collard wrap
( MAKES 4 wraps )
Photo by Tam West
There are so many great things about this beautiful green wrap. Firstly, it contains shiitake mushrooms, which have incredible inflammation reducing and immune-boosting properties.
The smoky shiitake mushrooms lend that meaty bacon flavour, and so this wrap is my kind of plant-based version of a BLAT— being such a popular and well-loved flavour combination. The mushrooms are also great as a side dish, snack, on a salad or tossed through pasta.
You might have had fresh or dried shiitakes in the past and not enjoyed them, but don’t let that put you off.
The quality of shiitake mushrooms grown in New Zealand has improved a lot. We can buy beautiful fresh, soft ones from good produce and organic stores now, compared to the hard, intensely flavoured ones in the past.
Shiitake mushrooms have been scientifically proven to have many health benefits. They are a rich source of vitamin D, supporting a healthy immune system due to naturally occurring beta glucans, and positively impacting on cholesterol levels.
The wrap itself is made from a collard leaf. Collard leaves are incredibly common in America, and I have been obsessed with trying to get them here for a long time and had tried asking quite a few people to grow them for us.
Now, several years later, I can find them at my local organic wholefoods store in Mt Eden. They don’t have a strong flavour, don’t get soggy, and are relatively robust, making them the perfect easy to eat as a wrap. If you can’t get these big leafy wraps, use any wrap you like.
Try making your own vegan aioli using this recipe.
For the smoky mushrooms
|2 cups||Shiitake mushrooms, fresh|
|1 Tbsp||Olive oil|
|1 Tbsp||Maple syrup, organic|
|¼ tsp||Hot smoked paprika|
|6 drops||Liquid smoke, optional|
For the wraps
- Heat oven to 200C.
- Remove the stems from the shiitakes (you can set the stems aside in a container to use in a stock, or dry them and make them into a powder to add to savoury dishes) and slice into 3-4 strips each (depending on how big they are). You don’t want to make them too thin otherwise they will become crispy.
- Place all of the other shiitake ingredients in a medium sized bowl, and mix together well. Add in the mushrooms and mix thoroughly, making sure you coat them really well. If you’re using liquid smoke, be very careful not to overdo it. You only want to add one drop at a time. It’s really strong, and adding too much will create an unpleasant flavour.
- Line a baking tray with baking paper. Spread the shiitake evenly on the tray and bake in the oven for 5-7 minutes. You want them to start browning on the outside, but not be toughening. They should have a lovely bite to them, but still be soft and easy to eat.
- If using collard leaves, run the point of a sharp knife down each side of the hard stem to remove a round half it so that it rolls easily without breaking.
- Overlap the cut part of the leaf so there is no gap, and layer on your fillings. I start in the middle of the wrap with 1-2 Tbsp of aioli, followed by some sprouts, leafy greens, capsicum, ½ avocado, few slices tomato, shiitake mushrooms, basil, salt and pepper.
- Like rolling sushi, you want to tightly roll the wrap with your hands. You don’t want it to be loose, or it will fall apart.
- The wraps can be cut in half for a small lunch, or serve one per person for a more substantial dinner. Serve with a little extra aioli on the side for dipping.