Well, it wouldn’t be a vegan Christmas without a nut roast! Roasted in a wreath tin and topped with my cranberry sauce, it’s the perfect Christmas centerpiece.
To fry sage leaves for garnish, leave the saucepan on the heat after cooking the nut roast mixture in it. Add a couple tablespoons more of oil if there’s none left in the pan. Throw in the sage leaves and cook for 2 minutes, until crisp. Transfer the sage leaves from the pan onto a couple of sheets of paper towel to soak up any excess oil.
3 Tbsp olive oil
1 red onion, finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 leek, finely chopped
7 oz butternut squash, peeled and cut into small cubes
1 small eggplant, cut into small cubes
2 oz vacuum-packed chestnuts, roughly chopped
1/2 tsp allspice
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1 sprig fresh rosemary, finely chopped
10 fresh sage leaves, finely chopped, plus extra whole leaves for garnish
Sea salt and pepper
1 orange, zest and juice
1 cup mixed nuts (Brazil nuts, pistachios, walnuts, etc.)
1 cup cooked chickpeas (garbanzos)
1/2 cup gluten-free breadcrumbs
1/3 cup dried cranberries, roughly chopped
1/4 cup dried apricots, roughly chopped
1/3 cup sun-dried tomatoes, roughly chopped
3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp white miso paste
3 Tbsp nutritional yeast
1 Tbsp Marmite
Fried sage leaves (see “Sage wisdom”)
Preheat oven to 350 F. Grease nonstick 10 inch cake ring mold/tin. (Line with parchment paper if it’s not nonstick.)
Heat olive oil in large saucepan over medium heat and sauté onion, celery, garlic, leek, squash, eggplant and chestnuts for a few minutes, stirring frequently. Add spices, herbs, some seasoning and orange zest. Turn heat down and cook for 8 to 10 minutes, stirring every now and then. You want all flavors to marry together and vegetables to soften slightly.
While vegetables are cooking, blitz nuts in blender until they are a crumb-like consistency. Add chickpeas and pulse a couple times just to break down slightly. Tip mixture into saucepan and add breadcrumbs, cranberries, apricots and sun-dried tomatoes, stirring well.
Add orange juice, vinegar, miso paste, nutritional yeast and Marmite and cook for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring often, then turn off heat.
Spoon Cranberry & Orange Sauce into tin and spread out evenly, then carefully spread nut roast mixture on top. Press mix into tin as much as you can. Once you’ve filled the tin, cover with foil and roast in preheated oven for 30 to 35 minutes. After roasting, allow to cool slightly before turning out of tin. Serve topped with garnishes of choice.