Thursday, 4 December 2014


After a really full on couple of weeks, I finally had a quiet day off on Tuesday. The weather has suddenly turned cold, so I decided to get into the Christmas spirit to cheer myself up. Having spent ages trying to untangle the Christmas decorations I then decided to do some cooking as I've been living off protein shakes & it feels like ages since I actually cooked. really wanted to come up with a seasonal vegetarian roast that didn't involve nuts. I know lots of people can't tolerate nuts - i used to have terrible allergic reactions that would leave me totally wiped out for days. I seem Ok on them now, but am still cautious so I limit my intake.
I'm so into chestnuts at the moment! so good for you, and so delicious. - I actually had the leftover bit for breakfast the next day!
I've recommended a couple of products in this post. I don't have any connections with these companies, I'm not sponsored by anyone, they are just store cupboard staples for me!

Preheat to 180c

100G cooked Butternut squash 
100g cooked chestnuts  (i used vacuum packed cooked chestnuts)
100g cooked brown rice or (as i used) 100g tilda steamed brown basmati rice (i used it straight from the packet. no need to heat it up first)

100ml vegetable stock ( homemade or from a cube)
1 large egg ( I used a duck egg)
white part of 1 leek
1/2 tablespoon light olive oil
handful of dried cranberries
handful of fresh parsley
salt and pepper to taste.

If you don't have left over butternut squash hanging around (as i did) Peel, roast, bake, steam or boil your squash. ( i like to roast or bake because it intensifies the flavour)
for the leek. chop the leek up finely. Heat 1/2 tablespoon light olive oil in a frying pan and stir fry the leek until softened and starting to brown. You want to do this over a medium heat - it'll only take a few minutes.
place the leeks, chestnuts, squash, rice, fresh parsley, cranberries and salt and pepper into your blender. Add the egg and blitz. (if you don't have a blender, you can put all the ingredients into a large bowl and use a stick blender)

Line a loaf tin with baking paper (as shown below) which makes it super easy to remove the loaf when it's cooked. pour the mix into the tin, decorate with slices of butternut squash and tomatoes (optional - but nut roasts aren't the prettiest, so any decoration helps!)

bake at 180c for 75 mins.

Once cooked, leave on one side to cool. It will firm up as it cools and be easier to lift out of the tin. You then just peel the baking paper off and you're done!

served here with some this new pumpkin sauce from little pasta organics.  ( i love their sauces, because they are organic, and a great store cupboard ingredient. If you come home late and want a quick , fuss free, healthy supper, just put a pan of pasta on to cook, then heat up a jar of this with some pinenuts and feta cheese. I also love their tomato & spinach pasta sauce for the same reason. The best thing is they are small jars, so if you're cooking for 1 or 2 you don't get left with a big jar of tomato sauce that needs eating up :)

Have a great weekend everyone!................. I still haven't untangled the Christmas decorations btw........

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