Our Nut Roast trouble-shooting tips for a stress-free Christmas…
Is the mixture too dry? The lentils are the source of moisture in this recipe, they are the glue that holds the roast together. When you cook them in water before adding to the mixture, make sure you’re cooking them until they are soft and starting to break down a little. They shouldn’t look like soup but they should be soft enough to break up when squished slightly.
Another reason why it may be too dry… The roast may be over-cooking in the oven slightly. Ovens vary a lot and sometimes the temperature and air circulation is very different and can have quite a big effect on what you’re cooking. If the roast is cooking too much it will dry out and be crumbly. Try reducing the cooking time by 5 mins.
Make sure the mixture is well-combined… When you’ve added all of your ingredients to the pan, give everything a bit of a squish with the back of a spoon. This helps to breakdown the lentils and bind the mixture together. Make sure you push the mixture firmly into the tin before baking to help it stick together.
Leave it to cool slightly before slicing. If you try to slice it when it is very hot it may crumble.
If all else fails, cook the roast before the big day. Chill down overnight, then slice into portions. These slices can be reheated in a warm oven when you’re ready. Do cover them though or they may dry out.
Easy to make and delicious hot or cold, nut roast is the classic main course for a veggie Christmas.
Preparation: 15 mins
Cooking: 1 hour 10 mins
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Cook the lentils in plenty of water for 15 minutes, then drain using a fine sieve. While the lentils cook, heat a little of the sun-dried tomato oil in your largest frying pan and gently fry the onion for 5 minutes.
2. Add all the other ingredients, except the seasoning, to the pan. Stir really well, add the cooked lentils and stir again, seasoning to taste.
3. Line a loaf tin (approximately 20cm x 10cm) with non-stick baking paper and spoon in the mixture. Bake for 50 minutes and allow to cool slightly before removing and cutting into thick slices.
Note: This can be made ahead of time and frozen for up to three months, or chilled for up to three days and reheated.
*Gluten-free soy sauce is available in most supermarkets.