Happy Thanksgiving, and I am so grateful for all of my family, friends and followers.  Over these many years I have had the privilege’s of cooking for the Chapman Piedmont Wellness Center, and this is the delicious plant based Vegetarian Nut Roast I made for the holiday season.  The holiday’s are a special time to be together, to feast and give thanks.  There are certain flavors we associate with the holidays, and this ingredients in this roast makes it perfect for the season, for those of us following a plant based diet.  The base of the roast takes time to make, and it is a labor of love, but when it comes to feasting for the holiday’s we want to go that extra mile.    The roast can be made the day before, and then baked before serving, so you can relax and enjoy your  company.

Let me take this opportunity once again to wish  you all  a Happy, Healthy Thanksgiving!  I hope you enjoy this recipe!

Holiday Pistachio and Cranberry Roast

 1 oz. (Small handful of dried porcini mushrooms)

  • 2 sticks of celery
  • 2 cups of red onions (1 ½ onions)
  • 2 cloves of garlic (finely chop)
  • 2 Tbsp. Olive oil
  • ¾ cups of pearl barley
  • ½ cup of white wine
  • 2 cups hot organic vegetable stock
  • 8 oz. of portabella mushroom’s (chopped)
  • 2/3 cups of pistachios
  • 2/3 cups of almonds
  • ¾ cups of vegetarian cheddar cheese
  • 1 small orange
  • 2 sprigs of fresh sage
  • 2 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 2 free range eggs
  • 1 handful of spelt breadcrumbs
  • (for the topping)
  • 1 Tbsp. succulent honey granules
  • 2 cups of fresh cranberries

How to make it:

  1. Make the risotto base first.  Soak the dried porcini in a little boiling water.  Trim and finely chop the celery and onion, and garlic.
  2. Heat a drizzle of oil in a large pan over a low heat.  Add the celery and onion and cook for 10 minutes, until soft and sweet.  Add the garlic and cook for another minute or two.
  3. Turn up the heat and add the barley.  Cook for a minute or so until you hear it snap, crackle and pop, and then add the wine and stir until absorbed.
  4. Drain the porcini, sieve, and finely chop.  Discard any grit from the liquid and add to the risotto pan, stirring until it has been absorbed.  Stir in the porcini to the pan.
  5. Add the stock, a ladleful at a time, stirring each one in until it has been completely absorbed, (this will take around 20 minutes or so).  Stir as much as you can – this is what will make it creamy.  Once the barley is al dente (when you break into a grain), transfer to a bowl to cool.
  6. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F/gas mark 5.
  7. Sauté the mushrooms in a little oil over a medium heat for 5 to 10 minutes, until they are just starting to crisp.
  8. Toast, then bash the nuts into coarse pieces, or quickly pulse in a food processor.
  9. Grate the cheddar, and finely grate the orange zest.  Pick and roughly chop all the herb leaves. In a small bowl, beat the eggs.
  10. Once the risotto has cooled, add the breadcrumbs, cheese, orange zest, eggs and chopped herbs, season and mix well.
  11. Grease a loaf tin and line the bottom with greaseproof paper.  Cook the cranberries in the brown sugar in a pan over a medium heat for 1 or 2 minutes, then tip into the tin and spread evenly.  Pile on the nut roast mixture and pack it down with the back of a spoon.
  12. Cover the whole thing with foil and bake for 45 minutes, then remove the foil and cook for a further 15 minutes.  Once it’s golden brown on top, remove the nut roast from the oven and leave to settle for 10 minutes.
  13. Use a knife to loosen the tin and place your serving platter or board on top.   Cover your hand with a tea towel and flip the whole lot over, then carefully lift the tin off.  Serve with all the trimmings.

Enjoy the Holiday Season!

With all of my love from Judith