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Golden puff pastry is topped with butternut purée, stuffing, crispy roast potatoes and perfectly cooked veg in this alternative Christmas dinner tart.

From the book

Introduction

This incredible tart has all your favourite elements of a roast dinner. It’s the perfect alternative Sunday lunch or festive meal – just don’t forget the gravy!

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Ingredients

For the vegetables:
200g beetroot
½ butternut squash
250g carrots
200g parsnips
1 tbsp olive oil
120g Brussels sprouts, halved
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp grated nutmeg
salt and black pepper
For the best roast potatoes:
1.8kg large potatoes, not peeled, cut into 5cm pieces
100ml olive oil
2 tbsp vegetable oil
30g butter
6 garlic cloves, crushed
4 long fresh rosemary sprigs
6 fresh thyme sprigs
salt
For the stuffing:
450g sourdough (or other) bread torn into 2-3cm pieces
125g butter
150g celery (about 5 sticks), finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
120ml white wine
2 tbsp freshly chopped rosemary
2 tbsp freshly chopped thyme
2 tbsp freshly chopped sage
240ml veg stock
80ml cold water
2 tbsp cornflour
salt and black pepper
For the tart:
1 sheet gluten-free puff pastry
oat milk, for brushing
6 tbsp cranberry sauce
gravy, to serve
For the crispy sage:
8-10 sage leaves
3 tbsp olive oil

Essential kit

You will need: a blender.

Method

Preheat the oven to 240˚C/220˚C fan/gas 9.

Wrap the beetroot in foil and put on one side of a baking tray. Place the squash next to them, cut-side down. Roast for up to 1 hour (depending on their size), until the beetroot are totally soft. If the squash cooks more quickly, remove it from the oven and let the beetroot keep cooking.

Slice the carrots and parsnips in half lengthways and put in a roasting tray. Drizzle with olive oil, add a pinch of salt and roast for 30 minutes, until soft and charred.

Make the best roast potatoes:

Preheat the oven to 220°C/200°C fan/gas 7.

Put the potatoes in a large pan of salted water. Bring to the boil over medium–high heat, then reduce to a simmer and cook for about 5 minutes, until the potatoes are fork- tender on the outside but still firm in the middle.

When the potatoes are nearly ready, add the oils and butter to a large roasting tin, mix together then place in the hot oven for at least 5 minutes until the oils and butter are hot.

Drain the potatoes well then return them to their pan, uncovered, to steam-dry for about 2 minutes. Holding the lid on securely with both hands, give the pan a good shake, just enough to fluff up the outer edges of the potatoes; don’t shake the pan too hard or the potatoes will break apart.

Take the roasting tin out of the oven and carefully coat the potatoes in the hot oils. Spread out the potatoes to keep them separate in the roasting tin as this will ensure each one gets super-crispy in the oven. Roast the potatoes for 20 minutes, turning them halfway through. If they are browning too quickly, reduce the heat.

Add the garlic, rosemary and thyme sprigs, turn the potatoes again then return to the oven for a further 10 minutes, until the potatoes are golden brown and the skin is deliciously crispy. Transfer the potatoes, garlic, thyme and rosemary to a serving ted spoon or tongs to drain off any excess oil.

Make the stuffing:

Preheat the oven to its lowest setting. Place the bread on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes, or until the bread is dried out on the surface.

Melt the butter in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the celery and onion and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft. Stir in the garlic and cook for 1 minute, until fragrant. Add the wine and herbs, increase the heat to bring the wine to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, until reduced. Add the veg stock, bring to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, stir the water and cornflour together until there are no clumps.

Stir the cornflour mixture into the stock and cook for 1–2 minutes, until the mixture thickens slightly. Remove from the heat.

Increase the oven temperature to 180°C/160°C fan/gas 4.

Put the dried bread in a large baking dish and pour over the onion and celery mixture. Stir until the bread is evenly coated and season with salt and black pepper. Cover with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for a further 18–20 minutes, until dried out on top and crispy around the edges.

Remove from the oven and leave to cool slightly before serving.

Scoop the seeds from the cooked squash and set aside (you can rinse them and toast them for a snack). In a blender, blitz the squash with the nutritional yeast, cinnamon and nutmeg. Season well and blitz to a purée.

Squeeze the beets from their skins and slice into wedges.

Cut the sheet of puff pastry into 4 rectangles. Lightly score a border, 2cm from the edge. Brush with oat milk, then bake for 20–30 minutes until golden and risen; use a spoon to push the middle down.

Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, add the sprouts with a pinch of salt and fry for 5 minutes. Add a big splash of water (the steam helps them to cook through) and cook for a further 5 minutes, until tender. Set aside.

Make the crispy sage. Heat the oil in a small frying pan over high heat. Once hot, fry the sage for 2 minutes until crispy. Set aside to drain on kitchen paper.

Spoon the butternut squash purée onto each pastry rectangle, then crumble over the stuffing. Top with the carrots, parsnips, beetroot and roast potatoes. Scatter over the sprouts, then spoon over a little cranberry sauce. Finish with the crispy sage leaves and serve with lots of gravy.

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From the book: You Can Cook This!: Simple, satisfying, sustainable veg recipes

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