Vegetarian Meals

 

 

LENTIL AND MUSHROOM LOAF WITH SAVORY
POTATO FILLING

Makes 8 to 10 servings

Meat pies are a long tradition for English Christmases, so this was devised to be not necessarily imitative of meat but with a sort of stick-to-the ribs quality characteristic of English foods. This flavorful loaf contains the pleasant surprise of a nicely seasoned potato filling in the center.

1 cup raw lentils
1 tablespoon safflower oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 ounces white mushrooms
5 ounces (l/2 package) thawed frozen spinach
1 tablespoon natural soy sauce
2 tablespoons wheat germ
freshly ground pepper to taste
dash nutmeg
1 cup ffrmly packed grated Stilton or Gruyere soy cheese

Filling

1 tablespoon safflower oil
1 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup dry bread crumbs
1 cup coarsely mashed potato (from about 1 medium cooked and peeled potato)
teaspoon each: seasoned salt, dried thyme, and dried basil
freshly ground pepper to taste curly parsley for garnish

Rinse and sort the lentils. Combine in a heavy saucepan with 4 cups water. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, covered, until the lentils are tender, about 45 minutes. Drain.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the garlic and mushrooms and saute over medium heat, stirring, until the mushrooms are wilted. Stir in the spinach, lentils, soy sauce, and wheat germ. Grind in some pepper and add the nutmeg. Cook, stirring, until the mixture is heated through,
then stir in the soy cheese.

Lightly oil a 9- by 5- by 3inch loaf pan, preferably glass. Pour in about 2/3 Of the lentil mixture. Press some of the mixture up the sides of the pan to create a shell about inch thick. Transfer the remaining lentil mixture to a small bowl and reserve until needed.

Rinse the skillet and heat the oil. Add the onion and sautee until golden brown. Add the remaining filling ingredients and saute, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Transfer into the shell created by the lentil mixture, then cover the top with the reserved lentil mixture. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes, or until the top is crusty.

Remove from the oven and let the loaf stand for 10 to 15 minutes. Slide a spatula or knife around the edges to loosen it. Cut slices and arrange them on an oblong dish. Garnish with parsley and serve.
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SAGE AND ONION STUFFING

Makes 8 to 10 servings

Using an infusion of sage rather than the strong-flavored leaves themselves gives this stuffing that wonderful herbal flavor without overpowering it.

3 tablespoons fresh sage leaves, or 1 tablespoon dried
1 cup boiling water
2 tablespoons safflower oil
pound onions, very finely chopped
4 cups fine fresh bread crumbs
1 medium Granny Smith apple, peeled, fored, and finely diced
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
2 egg replacements, beaten
salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Combine the sage leaves with the boiling water. Steep for at least 15 minutes, then strain. Discard the sage and reserve the water.

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Add the onions and saute over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they are lightly browned.

In a mixing bowl, combine the onions with the bread crumbs and the remaining ingredients. Sprinkle in the sage stock until the ingredients are evenly moistened. Transfer to an oiled, shallow 1 quart casserole dish (a round glass one works well). Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or
until the outside is golden brown and crusty.

 

Winter Vegetable Stew with a Cheddar Crust
Categories: Stews, Vegetables, Food & wine, Dkuhnen msn
Yield: 6 Servings

4 T Butter
1/4 c Olive oil
1 lg Red onion, cut crosswise into 1/2" thick rounds
3 md Carrots, cut into 1" pieces
1 Celery root (about 1 lb) Peeled and cut into 1" Pieces
1 Acorn squash (about 1 1/2lb) Peeled and cut into 1 1/2" Pieces
1 Butternut squash (about 1 1/2 lb) peeled and cut Into 1 1/2" pieces
3 Parsnips, peeled and Quartered lengthwise
5 md Portobello mushrooms (about 1 lb), stems reserved for Broth, caps cut into 1"
Pieces
4 c Mushroom broth (recipe Follows)
Salt and freshly ground
Black pepper
1/4 t Marjoram

CHEDDAR BISCUIT CRUST
2 c All-purpose flour
4 t Baking powder
1 1/2 t Minced garlic
1/2 t Salt
1/4 t Coarsely ground pepper
1 Stick (4oz) cold, unsalted Butter, cut into cubes
1 c Shredded sharp cheddar Cheese, shredded (4oz)
1 c Heavy cream

MUSHROOM BROTH
1/4 c Vegetable oil
1 1/2 lb White mushrooms, finely Chopped
Reserved portobello mushroom stems, brushed clean
1/2 Spanish onion, coarsely chopped
2 t Chopped garlic
2 c Dry white wine
1/2 c Soy sauce
1/2 c Dried mushrooms, such as
Porcini, shiitake (1/2 oz)
pn Salt
1/2 t Herbes de provence or thyme

TO MAKE THE MUSHROOM BROTH:
In a large non-reactive saucepan, heat the vegetable oil over moderately high heat.
Add white mushrooms, portobello stems, onion and garlic and cook, stirring, until the
mushrooms release their liquid, about 5 minutes. Add the wine, soy sauce, dried
mushrooms, salt, herbes de provence and 6 cups of water and bring to a boil. Cover,
reduce the heat to moderate and simmer until the liquid is reduced to about 4 cups.
about 1 hour. Pour the broth through a fine strainer into a heatproof bowl. Strain again,
leaving any particles at the bottom of the bowl.
TO MAKE THE STEW:
Preheat the oven to 400F. In a large nonreactive skillet, melt 1 tbsp. of the butter in 1
tbsp. of oil over moderately high heat. Add the onion and carrots and cook, stirring
occasionally, until browned all over, about 10 minutes; transfer to a large roasting pan.
Add another tbsp. each of oil and butter to the pan. Add celery root and butternut
squash and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned all over, about 10 mins ; transfer
to the roasting pan. Repeat browning process with acorn squash and parsnips;
transfer to roasting pan. Add mushrooms, and repeat until tender and browned all over
(about 6mins.) remove to roasting pan. Add broth to the skillet and bring to a simmer
over high heat, scraping up any browned bits. Pour over the vegetables. Season with
Salt and pepper and add marjoram. Cover with foil and cook in the oven for about
45mins. or until just tender. Increase oven temp. to 450F and cook, uncovered for 5
mins.
MEANWHILE, MAKE THE CHEDDAR BISCUIT CRUST:
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, garlic, salt and pepper. Cut in
the butter, until mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in the cheese. Add cream and mix
lightly with wooden spoon until the dough just holds together. Cover and set aside.
Using a large spoon, dollop the biscuit dough on the vegetable stew; there will be some
bald spots. Bake for about 20 minutes or until the crust is cooked through and golden.
NOTE: In a pinch, use chicken stock or canned low-sodium broth. From 'Food & Wine'
magazine, January 1997.