Time: 2 hour 10 mins
Price: €10.81 total, €1.35 per portion
This week’s main is one of my favourite things to cook for an occasion. It’s seasonal and pretty (normally, but we’ll get to why mines looks like it’s wearing a jacket that’s too small for it in a bit!), making it the perfect centerpiece to your Christmas dinner. It’s no secret that I love mushrooms so I had to add a mushroomy main to this series, adding lentils to bulk it up a bit! While this isn’t the quickest meal to prepare – this filling can be made ahead of time so you don’t have to do it all at once! Although also not the cheapest of meals, €1.35 per person is still VERY budget friendly!
You will need:
- 600g chestnut mushrooms – minced in the food processor
- 3 red onions
- 1/2 bulb of smoked garlic (or any garlic but I like the flavour smoked adds) – minced
- 2 medium carrots – diced small
- 4 sticks of celery – diced small
- 2 tins of green lentils – drained and rinsed
- 2 knorr veg stock pots dissolved in 400ml stock (or 400ml concentrated stock)
- 2tbsp tamari
- 1tbsp vegan Worcester sauce
- 1 cup breadcrumbs
- 1 sprig fresh rosemary
- 1 sprig fresh thyme
- 1 pack vegan puff pastry (2 rolls) – defrosted and warmed to room temp, I use jusrol
- salt and pepper
- a little oil
How to make it:
Start by sweating down the onion and garlic in 200ml of the concentrated stock (we are using so little as we want as little moisture left at the end as possible). While that reduces down, prepare your carrot and celery, drain and rinse your lentils, and pulse your mushrooms in the food processor. Make sure to do this handful at a time as all the mushrooms will not fit in the food processor at the same time. You can chop the mushrooms by hand if you don’t have a food processor, just make sure to chop them into very small pieces. When the onions are translucent and the stock evaporated, add in the carrot and celery along with the rest of the stock. Return this to the heat until the stock reduces and evaporates again.
Once all the stock has evaporated from the pan, add in the lentils, mushrooms, tamari, Worcester sauce and about 2 tsp each of the thyme and rosemary (removed from the stalks). Sprinkle over a generous amount of salt as this will help all of the moisture come out from the vegetables. Return this to a medium heat, covered, until the moisture which has left the vegetables builds up in the pan. Removed the lid and cook until all of the moisture is gone from the pan, stirring regularly – this should take 30-40 mins.
When there is no running liquid left in the pan, add in the breadcrumbs and mix thoroughly until there are no dry breadcrumbs left. This helps soak up any excess moisture (I’ve had many attempts at this bust out the sides of the pastry because the mix was too wet!) and bind the mixture together. Allow the mix to cool for 15 mins before adding to the pastry – turn the oven on to preheat to 180c (fan) at this point).
The mushroom mix will make 2 wellingtons, half fitting perfectly into one roll of the jusrol puff pastry. So you can make 2 now or freeze some of the mix for use with the other roll (it comes frozen) at a later time. If you do this, defrost the mushroom base fully – you may have to add some more breadcrumbs too if there is any excess liquid.
When the mushroom mix is ready, lay half out into a fat sausage shape onto each sheet of pastry as you see in the picture above.
Next, fold in the ends of the pastry and then the sides, pressing the edges together. Use a little bit of water or oil to seal any overlaps. Flip the pastry over so that the seal is underneath (the opposite is pictured DO NOT DO WHAT I DID!!) *CONFESSION TIME* I hadn’t made this dish in a while and forgot to seal the pastry – and should have cooked it ON the seal side. Ooops!! Put some scored about 75% of the way through the pastry with a sharp knife – you could also save some of the edge pieces and instead of folding them, cut them off and make little holly leaves to put on top! Brush with a little but of oil or plant milk and crack some pepper over the top. Bake in the oven for 60-75 minutes, until golden brown.
Annnnnnd now you know why you need to seal and flip your pastry – you do not want your wellington to look like this. It tastes great and all, but it looks like sh*t!
Let your wellington rest and cool for 5 mins, slice, then serve with all the trimmings! All of my sides will be in future posts, so look out for them! The gravy will be in next weeks starter post for sure.
As always, I hope you’ll give this recipe a go! Let me know how much better yours turns out, too! See you on Saturday for dessert number 2! Make sure to follow my blog and facebook page to be notified when the dessert is up!