Food Blog

Best ever festive nut roast!

This will probably be my last recipe post before Christmas day... so I figured I'd better make it a good one AND I figured a savoury recipe might just be in order!

For those of you with a sweet tooth...don't worry, I've added links to two of my favourite festive treats too.... scroll down for those!

I had an epic baking session in the kitchen yesterday.... four big nut roasts, two big batches of bliss balls and two big trays of chocolate-orange-raspberry brownie cake. That should set me up for the next week, though they weren't all for me somewhere private orders for others ;-)

The photos of the nut roast are not the best ever since they were fresh out of the oven and I couldn't slice into them as they needed to be kept whole for the big day itself, however the recipe is very similar in texture to my previous nut roast recipe and so I have shown sliced photos of that one below so you get the full idea!

What's different about this nut roast?

What's the secret ingredients?

.... well, sun dried tomatoes are the answer!

On my recent wellness retreat I made 'meatballs' that used mushrooms, sunflower seeds and sun-dried tomatoes and they tasted incredible- I'll try and post the recipe soon but I need good photos! The sun-dried tomatoes create an amazing richness to a meatball/nut roast style recipe, and so in creating this nut roast I tweaked my previous recipe that I still love so much to add in the tomatoes as well as a few different herbs.

One of things I love about this recipe, as well as its previous incarnation was that it's not too heavy on the nuts- a lovely combination of nuts and beans and oats (oat make a great wheat free alternative to breadcrumbs).

I found an idea for a glaze by Angela at Oh She Glows, and so I tweaked that and added it to the top half of my loaves too for variety. 

I have made this as a loaf tin and also in deep cake pans, as shown here, that I plan to cut into wedges to serve. Always nice to change things up a bit! 

Do the double bake! As per my original recipe one of the ways I like to serve this is to bake a few days in advance, freeze, then defrost for an hour or so on Christmas morning just enough to slice neatly and then arrange the individual slices on a baking sheet and 'double bake' for super crispy edges and to heat though. Amazingly time-saving on Christmas morning!

A good nut roast would not be complete without gravy… This is my favourite mushroom gravy recipe and the one I'll be serving up on Christmas day. Even mushroom haters will like it (I used to be a mushroom hater myself!) It looks a bit grey in the photos on the link but it's not so much in real life ;-)

plain top on the left and glazed top on the right (add the glaze near the end so it doesn't burn!)

plain top on the left and glazed top on the right (add the glaze near the end so it doesn't burn!)

Recipe: Christmas Nut Roast

Makes 1 loaf or a 8" cake pan

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chopped nuts/seeds (I used a mix of almonds, walnuts and sunflower seeds)
  • 1 tbs olive oil (if sun dried tomatoes are not in oil)
  • One onion diced
  • Three garlic clove minced
  • 1 large carrot grated
  • 1 medium parsnip
  • 1 cup cooked white beans
  • 1/2 cup sundried tomatoes (approx 6)
  • 1 cup dry porridge oats 
  • 2 heaped tbs flax (or chia, tapioca or potato flour)
  • small handful fresh parsley 
  • small handful fresh oregano 
  • 1 tsp dried mixed Italian herbs
  • 2 tbs tamari soy sauce
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Up to ¼ cup vegetable stock if needed (I never need it as it's moist enough)

Method:

Pre-heat oven to 180C. Coarsely grind any nuts/seeds and set aside. if you are using sundries tomatoes not in oil add them here also (if soft in oil add with veg)

Sauté vegetables in olive oil for 5 mins until soft- add sun dried tomatoes if in oil. 

Mix all ingredients in large bowl adding sautéed vegetables to it. Mix and mash together well and add stock only if needed to achieve a sticky (but not wet) consistency. Add more oats if mixture is too wet. 

Press mixture firmly into a greased and lined 20cm loaf pan or cake pan. Bake for approx. 45 mins until cooked through and golden on top. If adding the glazed brush this on generously 10 mins before the end of the cooking time I found it tended to burn of added at the beginning of the cooking time).

Let the loaf sit for 10 mins before turning out of tin.

 

Recipe: Glaze:

Ingredients:

  • 2 tbs tomato puree
  • 1 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbs maple syrup
  • 2 tbs apple puree (plain apple sauce)

Method:

Mix all ingredient together and brush on top ofbthe loaf with a pastry brush in a  generous layer. I add the glaze towards the end of the bake time so seal it but so that it doesn't risk burning.

My original nut loaf recipe- great texture!   

My original nut loaf recipe- great texture! 

 


Easy sweet treat ideas roundup!

Since I have had a few full on chocolatey days at home in my kitchen, I thought it would only be fair to share a few recipes with you from ym archives- easy no fuss winners that are wheat free and refined sugar free too.

This forest fruit chocolate pudding-cake is a spin on my favourite brownie cake and perfect for a celebttipn- serve hot or cold with vegan cream or ice-cream. Winner! I made a version this year mixing the beside through the batter and then adding a sugar free jam glaze when it came out of the oven!

These choc-orage goji bites are one of my classic 'bliss ball' style recipes- seen here sliced into squares instead of rolled into balls. You can really make any variation- this year I made this recipe but istead of orange extract I added a generous helping of ground ginger, added a tiny bit of water to make the mix even more fudgey, rolled them into balls and then dusted in extra cacao. So good! 

I'd love to hear what you'll be concocting in the kicthen for Christmas... if you make any of my recipes please tag me on social media (see links below) you have no idea how happy it makes me to see your pics!

Wishing you a totally magical Christmas season!


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