I’ve been wanting to make a Nut Roast for absolutley ages, so this Sunday I did an alternative to a regular Sunday Roast with this meat free version! So delicious, completely packed with healthy ingredients and it’s vegetarian AND gluten free! This is also a great dish to make up for the week and have cold with salad, soup or vegetables.
Serves 2-4 depending on how hungry you are!
100g Chana Dal
225ml vegetable stock (I use Knorr stock cubes as they’re gluten free)
1 bay leaf
50g Cashew nuts – unsalted
Spray Olive Oil
2 x Chopped Red Onions
2 Small, Finely Chopped Red Peppers
75g Sliced Mushrooms
1 Finely chopped garlic clove
1 tbsp lemon juice
50g Caerphilly cheese, crumbled
50g Gluten Free Breadcrumbs (I used Mrs Crimble’s)
1 tbsp Dried, mixed herbs
1 beaten egg
400g can chopped tomatoes
2 tsp Mixed Herbs
2 dashes of Tabasco
Preheat the oven to 200 C
1. Cook the Chana Dal for 30 minutes, drain, rinse then put back into the pan, pour over the stock (add a little extra boiling water if needed), drop in the bayleaf, cover the pan with a lid and cook for a further 15 minutes. Once cooked, remove from the heat and set aside (this will allow the lentils to absorb the rest of the liquid if they haven’t already during cooking! If the lentils stick to the bottom of the pan, don’t worry, just add a splash more of boiling water and stir it up… If you do burn the bottom, just leave it and use what you have or, cook up some more if you’ve really gone to town on the char-grilling of the lentils!)
2. Meanwhile, roughly chop the cashew nuts and toast in a dry frying pan
. Remove the nuts from the pan and place in a small bow/dish/cup/general storage container of your choice (not your mouth, do not eat these nuts! resist!!) for later.
3. Spray some oil into the pan and sautee the onions (cook over a low heat until they look slightly transluscent). Put half the onion mix into another general storage container for the sauce and add the mushrooms, peppers and garlic to the other half still in the pan. Cook for 5 minutes until the mixture has softened. Add in the lemon juice and cook for another 1 minute. Remove from the heat and set aside.
4. Take a large mixing bowl and pour in: the lentils, the pan of vegetables, the breadcrumbs, toasted cashew nuts and mixed herbs. Mix everything up, then add in the crumble cheese and egg. Mix again really thoroughly. Season well and give the whole mixture one final mix up.
5. Tip the mixture into a loaf tin and level out the top with a spatula or spoon to make sure it is really even (I got quite particular about this!) then take a piece of foil and fold it so that it sits on top of the loaf with a little up the sides of the tin. Spray the foil, place on the loaf and place the tin in the oven and bake for 30 minutes.
5. During the first 30 minutes of cooking, you can prepare your sauce: add the reserved onions and all of the other sauce ingredients to a small saucepan. Simmer on a low heat for 20 minutes or so – season to taste by checking every 10 minutes to see how the flavour is developing.
6. After 30 minutes remove the foil and place back into the oven for a further 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and rest for 10 minutes.
7. Warm up the sauce and cook your vegetables while the loaf rests for 10 minutes (this helps it to hold it’s shape and for the flavours to set in.)
8. Serve up and enjoy!
Also tastes great cold, and will keep for a few days wrapped in tin foil and stored in the fridge (I just had some with salad for lunch today)