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For a show-stopping vegetarian main this Christmas, try Jamie's veggie crown, made with slow-roasted vegetables, cheddar, and grains.

From the book

Jamie Oliver


I have to say, I’m pretty proud of this one – it’s a fantastic veggie main inspired by the textures of a Scottish clootie dumpling, and it also makes a tasty alternative to stuffing if any meat eaters fancy a little slice with their meal.

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¼ of a butternut squash (300g)
2 carrots
200g raw beetroot
2 red onions
1 bunch of thyme (20g)
10g dried porcini mushrooms
400g self-raising flour
1 tsp baking powder
100g vegetable suet
250g pouch of cooked mixed grains
180g vac-packed chestnuts or shelled unsalted walnut halves
50g Cheddar cheese
1 whole nutmeg, for grating
6 sun-dried tomatoes
1 large egg
150ml semi-skimmed milk
unsalted butter

Essential kit

You will need: a 2-litre non-stick bundt tin, pudding basin or 23cm springform cake tin.


Get ahead: Preheat the oven to 180ºC. Scrub the squash, carrots and beets, and chop into 3cm chunks. Peel and quarter the onions. Place it all in a roasting tray, keeping each veg separate. Strip over the thyme leaves, drizzle with 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and add a pinch of sea salt and black pepper, jiggling the tray to coat. Roast for 1 hour, then remove and leave to cool.

Soak the porcini in 100ml of boiling kettle water. Place the flour, baking powder, suet and grains in a large bowl, crumble in the chestnuts and add a pinch of salt and pepper. Coarsely grate in the Cheddar and finely grate in half the nutmeg. Scoop out the porcini, finely chop with the sun-dried tomatoes and add to the mix, then pour in the porcini soaking water, discarding just the last gritty bit. Beat the egg into the milk, and stir it all together. Mix in the cool roasted veg, taking care not to break them up, and adding an extra splash of milk to bring it together, if needed. Generously grease a 2-litre non-stick bundt tin, pudding basin or 23cm springform cake tin with butter, pack in the mixture, cover with greaseproof paper and a tight double layer of tin foil, then refrigerate overnight.

To serve: Preheat the oven to 190ºC. Roast the veggie crown above the meat for 1 hour 15 minutes, or until crisp at the edges, then turn out, slice and serve. It will sit happily, covered, for up to 40 minutes before serving, if needed.

ENERGY: 532kcal | FAT: 24.8g | SAT FAT: 9.4g | PROTEIN: 12.8g | CARBS: 67.8g | SUGARS: 10.8g | SALT: 1.3g | FIBRE: 5.8g


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From the book: Together: Memorable Meals, Made Easy

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