Thursday, 20 November 2014

OUR PERFECT NUT ROAST



With Christmas around the corner we thought it would be a great time to share our recipe for the
perfect nut roast that we think will please many a veggie on Christmas Day. Both Jon and I have had a crack at this roast and both times it's come out perfectly. It's packed full of herby onions and mushrooms, an array of chopped nuts and held together with rice and cottage cheese. It's a festive delight that will amaze not just on Christmas Day but at any Sunday roast too.




For an extra piece of Christmas specialness I've used some porcini and chestnut mushrooms in this nut roast as they add that extra level of earthy rustic mushroomy goodness to the loaf. You can use any mushroom you like though so throw in whatever you prefer or can get your hands on.

The herbs are all green and earthy. That's the kind of vibe you want to compliment the garlic mushroom base of the loaf. If you are doing this spare of the moment and don't have all of them don't worry and just use what you have in your cupboard and taste until you have a herby mix that you think is yum tastic.

The normal cooking rules apply when it comes to the wine. Only use a wine that you would be happy to drink. Rice? A long grain or a basmati works the best. Cook it up first and then drain and leave to cool ready to mix into the loaf when needed.

Your nuts and cheese can be swapped too to your personal preference. Almonds, Brazil's and pine nuts can all be chucked in too as long as the total weight of all your nuts is 350g. Whole walnuts do look pretty on the top though! Don't swap out the cottage cheese, it really helps keep the loaf nice and moist and trust me when I say you really can't taste that tang that cottage cheese can have so if your not a fan do not worry. Your secondary cheese is the one that adds the cheese flavour so choose something punchy like a Cheddar as I have. Parmesan would work, maybe a feta but stay well clear of mozzarella as it will make the loaf too stringy and gloopy.

Finally for the fresh herbs you want to compliment the dried herbs in the loaf so match your fresh and dried. Keep some pretty looking sprigs and leaves to decorate the top and make your loaf a true spectacle on the dinner table.

Right I think that's enough chat, let's get cracking with the recipe.

Our Perfect Nut Roast

1 Small Diced Red Onion
25g Dried Porcini (Soaked Prior To Use)
150g Chopped Chestnut Mushrooms
2 Grated Garlic Cloves
1 Tsp Dried Thyme
1 Tsp Dried Marjoram 
1 Tsp Dried Basil
1 Tsp Dried Tarragon 
1 Tsp Dried Sage
Good Glug Of Red Wine
150g Walnuts
150g Cashews
150g Cooked And Cooled Rice
5 Whole Eggs
250g Cottage Cheese
180g Grated Cheddar Cheese
2 Hand fulls Of Chopped Fresh Herbs
Salt And Pepper To Season

  1. Ovens on! 200 degrees (180 fan).
  2. Add the onions into a large oiled pan and fry until they begin to soften before adding in the mushrooms and garlic until the chestnut mushrooms begin to soften.
  3. Add in all the dried green herbs and keep frying for 1 minute before adding in the wine. Just a bit, enough to flavor everything and it should all burn away after a further couple of minutes fry. If you still have liquid in the pan after around five minutes drain it off as you have added too much. Remove from the heat and cool.
  4. Pulse the nuts in a food processor (keep some nice whole ones for decoration). You want an array of textures so don't whizz them all too dust, the majority should be crumb like and dotted throughout you should have a nice big chunk of nut. Throw them into a big bowl with the rice and mix together.
  5. Beat the eggs and cheeses together in a bowl and then throw it in with the nutty rice followed by the mushroom/onion mix and the fresh herbs (keep some fresh herbs for decoration). Season and give everything a good old mix until wellcombined.
  6. Line a loaf run big enough to hold everything with grease proof paper and pack in the nut loaf mix. Squash it right down to pack the loaf in so that it holds together well.
  7. Decorate the top of the loaf with nuts and herbs and then bake for approximately an hour until the top is firm and brown.

Remove from the oven and leave to stand for 10 minutes to let the loaf firm up so you can easily cut a big massive slab off to serve slathered in oodles of onion gravy. You can even freeze the loaf in the tin prior to cooking if you want to save time on the big day beforehand.

No excuse now for a dodgy veggie roast dinner. This is a nut loaf that, to be honest I would rather eat this than some of the dodgy roasts I've had over the years! That is what makes it perfect!





1 comment:

  1. Looks delicious & sounds like it's packed with flavour.

    ReplyDelete