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Savoury Christmas Pudding

This is our savoury version of a traditional fruit Christmas pudding. You can set it alight too, the best way to do this is heat up an extra 100ml of brandy in a saucepan and with the pudding beside you and the guests ready to eat and the lights dimmed, set alight to the brandy in the saucepan, when its alight immediately pour over the pudding and take to the table! The pudding is actually best made at least a day in advance and chilled before reheating, it will ensure that the pudding will be firm enough to easily turn out. It can be served straight from baking, but the mixture will be softer. Reheat it still in its bowl, covered with foil at 170C for 40 minutes before serving.

Savoury Christmas Pudding

Serves: 6-8

Dietary: Vegan, Gluten-free

Prep Time: 1 hour | Cook Time: 1 hour 20 minutes (including resting time)

Ingredients

  • 100g puy lentils
  • 75g raw buckwheat
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and chopped
  • 1 large carrot, grated
  • 100g Shitake or chestnut mushrooms, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp ground allspice
  • ½ tsp grated nutmeg
  • 500ml vegetable stock
  • 1 tbsp red or brown miso paste
  • 1 tsp fresh thyme leaves, chopped
  • 1 tbsp tamari
  • 100g porridge gluten free oats
  • 75g cashews, chopped roughly
  • Pinch of salt and pepper

Brandy Glaze

  • 100ml brandy
  • 2 tbsp tamari
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 100ml maple syrup
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp red or brown miso paste
  • ½ lemon, juice

Method

  1. In a medium sized saucepan, simmer thepuy lentils in plenty of water for 20-25 minutes until tender but still holding their shape.
  2. At the same time, in a small saucepan, simmer the raw buckwheat for 10-15 minutes until just tender, but still retaining some bite. Drain both the lentils and buckwheat once cooked and leave in separate bowls to one side.
  3. While the lentils and buckwheat are cooking, prepare the rest of the mixture.
  4. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a large saucepan, and on a medium heat, fry the onion for 10 minutes until soft and translucent and just beginning to turn golden.
  5. Add the garlic and grated carrot and cook for a few more minutes.
  6. Add in the chopped mushrooms, ground allspice and grated nutmeg and fry for 5 to 10 minutes until the mushrooms have released their juices.
  7. Pour in the vegetable stock, red or brown miso, tamari and thyme leaves. Bring to the boil and stir to make sure the miso is dissolved.
  8. Mix in the cooked lentils and oats. Keep stirring over a gentle heat until the mixture is like very thick porridge. Remove from the heatand stir in the cooked buckwheat, chopped cashew nuts, and then taste and season with a little salt if necessary and plenty of black pepper.
  9. Preheat the oven to 180C Fan.
  10. Generously oil a large 1.5 litre pudding basinor oven proof round bowl. For ease you could line it with baking parchment to ensure the pudding turns out perfectly.
  11. Spoon the pudding mixture into the pudding basin, cover with a piece of baking parchment, and a piece foil scrunched around the rim to seal. Bake for 40 minutes in the preheated oven, then remove the paper and foil and bake for another 20 minutes or until the top is brown and firm to touch. Remove from the oven, recover with the foil. Allow to stand for 20 minutes to firm up before turning out onto a serving plate.
  12. To serve, boil up the glaze ingredients for three to four minutes to reduce and thicken. Pour the hot glaze over the pudding just before serving. For a dramatic effect, you can set light to the brandy glaze at the last minute and serve a flaming savoury Christmas pudding centre piece. 

Tips

The pudding freezes very well, keep in the bowl to freeze. Remove from the freezer the night before serving and place in the fridge overnight to slowly defrost. Allow the pudding to come to room temperature and reheat it still in its bowl, covered with foil at 170C Fan for 40 minutes. Cook the glaze up on the day and pour it over hot at the last minute before serving.


Delicious food photography by Rob Wicks of Eat Pictures.

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