THE MAIN EVENT
For the first of this week’s posts as we gear up to Easter I thought it would be good to share a few ideas for the main event……whether you fancy a full on roast dinner, a one pot feast or a crowd pleasing vegan twist on a traditional favourite you have come to the right place.
I spent the first few months after going vegan having many Linda Mac Sausage Sunday Roasts, don’t get me wrong I still do enjoy them (usually Shroomdogs nowadays) but for special occasions it’s nice to bust out something a bit special so I either go for a wellington or a seitan ‘beefy’ joint served with all the trimmings.
For a great wellington recipe check out this one from Bosh, it’s gorgeous and I only ever hear good things about it on the vegan forums.
Seitan Roast ‘beef’
For the Seitan
- 230g vital wheat gluten
- 30g nutritional yeast flakes (nooch)
- 2 tablespoons plain flour
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 250ml veg stock
For the Broth
- 2.5 liters veg stock
- 2 tablespoons tomato puree
- 1 crushed garlic clove
- 120ml soy sauce
- A handful of dried mushrooms
- Salt and pepper to season
- For the Seitan mix your dry ingredients together and add the olive oil, stir to combine.
- Slowly add your veg stock (250ml) and combine till you have a dough ball.
- Knead for about 5 minutes, take out a bit of frustration on it. You want to get it to the point where its nice and elastic and formed a nice ball.
- Shape the dough to form a ‘joint’ shape.
- Place all of the broth ingredients into a saucepan and place your Seitan Joint into the stock.
- Cover with a lid and bring to the boil.
- Reduce to a simmer and cook for 30 minutes.
- Turn the joint and cook for a further 25 minutes.
- Turn off the heat, keep the lid on the pan and allow the joint to cool completely, allowing it to take on as much of the stock flavour as possible. The longer you leave it the better! Overnight is ideal but a minimum of 6 hours is recommended.
- Once the joint has cooled place it in a roasting tray along with a good few lugs of the stock, retain the rest to make gravy.
- Roast in the oven at 200℃ for 25-30 minutes, basting with the juices to ensure moistness. Each time you baste, flip the joint over.
I served ours with maple roast carrots and parsnips, vegan yorkshire puddings (recipe), peas, cabbage and rosemary roast spuds and lashings of gravy. Im mega lazy with gravy usually as I don’t think you can go far wrong with the red Bisto gravy granules (UK product) but there’s no need for laziness here as the remaining stock makes the best gravy! Simply blitz up till smooth, bring to a slow boil and spoon out half a mug full, add two tablespoons of corn flour to the mug and stir well, tip back into the pan and stir till thickened and piping hot. Serve with your roast dinner.
It’s also worth noting after you have cooked your Seitan in the stock you can shape it to make other products such as nuggets by coating in breadcrumbs and frying them off or cutting into chunks for kebab style meat pieces. My recipe here is based on the Dirty Vegan method with a few adaptations but if you want to follow the method and make nuggets grab a copy of the book for more information. To be honest you should grab a copy of the book anyway! It’s fantastic, I want to make every single recipe which you can’t say often, each recipe I have made so far has been gorgeous, plus it’s reduced from £20 to £8 at the moment! Find it here (affiliate link).
One Pot Feast
There is only one recipe I can possibly share here…….I have been overwhelmed by the feedback I have had for the Slow Cooker Vegetable Stew and Dumplings so I feel it would be wonderful on any Easter table! It’s absolutely cram packed full of goodness and because its slow cooked the flavours really have chance to come out. The dumplings add an extra comforting yumminess and once you have done all the prep you can just bang it in the slow cooker and forget about it all day, meaning you are free to be with your guest. You can’t go wrong!
Here is the recipe.
Before starting my blog I ran a small home based catering business where I sold vegan ready meals. One of the most popular meals I sold was the Derbyshire Hot Pot, the hearty mushroom and vegetable base combined with the balsamic and garlic sliced potatoes and caramelised shallot topping really make this dish quite special. I have had many people feed it none vegans with great success (as have all the dishes featured on this blog) and my mum requests this one all of the time, so much so I made her a stash in the freezer for when we went on holiday last year.
Derbyshire Hot Pot with Root Vegetables, Balsamic Roast Potatoes and Caramelised Shallots
- A dash of oil
- 600g borlotti beans
- 25g dairy free spread
- 800g chopped tomatoes
- 200g red lentils
- 1 tablespoon of mustard seeds
- 250 chestnut mushrooms
- 360g carrots
- 120g celery
- 1 white onion
- 35g flat leaf parsley
- 1 tablespoon tamari or soy sauce
- 4 cloves crushed garlic
- 2 tablespoons tomato ketchup
- 2 tablespoons brown sauce
- 1kg white potatoes
- 1 packet of shallots
- 50ml balsamic vinegar
- 100ml water
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- Heat oil in a large saucepan and add the onion, fry off till golden brown. Then add the mustard seeds, fry for a further 1 minute.
- Finely chop your carrots and celery and add to the pan, fry for 3-4 minutes.
- Add a twist of salt and pepper, red lentils and stir well.
- Add the tinned tomatoes and borlotti beans, stir well and turn up the heat to allow the pan to simmer.
- Meanwhile slice your mushrooms and parsley (retain some of the parsley for garnishing) and add to the pan.
- Add the water and cook for 6-8 minutes.
- Add the tamari, ketchup and brown sauce and cook until the veg is softened.
- Season to taste
- Tip the filling into a large baking dish and set aside. Move on to make the topping.
- Thinly slice the white potatoes and blanch in salted boiling water for 2 minutes, strain and allow to cool. Once cool place into a mixing bowl.
- Meanwhile crush the garlic and add to the mixing bowl with the balsamic vinegar, mix well and season with salt and pepper.
- Peel, top and tail the shallots, halving them or quartering any larger ones.
- Heat the oil in a large frying pan and cook the shallots over a high heat for 5 minutes.
- When golden add the butter, season to taste and cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring repeatedly to ensure they don’t burn. Set aside.
- Assemble the pie by layering the filling, topped with potatoes and a shake of salt and pepper and a sprinkle of chopped parsley.
- Bake in the oven at 200℃ for 15 minutes, remove from the oven and scatter the shallots over the top with a touch more chopped parsley. Return to the oven for a further 10-15 minutes or until the potatoes are golden and crispy.
Thank you so much for reading! I hope you enjoy these recipes! They are all tried and tested and always a hit in our house as I hope they are in yours.
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Love from Em x