Laden with wholesome and flavoursome, this is the perfect Christmas Day dinner option for the vegetarian in your life!
Serves 6 Adults
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large onion
2 sticks celery
2 garlic cloves
200g chestnut mushrooms
1 red pepper
1 large carrot
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon smoked paprika
100g red lentils
2 tablespoons tomato purée
300ml vegetable stock
100g fresh breadcrumbs
100g mixed nuts such as walnuts, pecans, hazelnuts and Brazil nuts, roughly chopped
3 large eggs
80g mature cheddar
Handful flat-leaf parsley
Heat the oven to 180C fan 160C/gas 4 and line the base and sides of a 1.5 litre loaf tin with parchment paper.
Heat one tbsp olive oil and 15g butter in a large frying pan and cook one finely chopped large onion and two finely chopped celery sticks for about five minutes until beginning to soften.
Stir in two finely chopped garlic cloves and 200g finely chopped chestnut mushrooms and cook for a further 10 mins.
Stir in one finely diced red pepper and one grated carrot and cook for about three minutes then add one tsp dried oregano and 1 tsp smoked paprika and cook for just a minute.
Add 100g red lentils and two tbsp tomato purée and cook for about one minute, then add 300ml vegetable stock and simmer over a very gentle heat until all the liquid has been absorbed and the mixture is fairly dry. This should take about 25 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Finally, stir in 100g fresh breadcrumbs, 100g chopped mixed nuts, three lightly beaten large eggs, 80g grated mature cheddar, a handful of finely chopped flat-leaf parsley and a pinch of salt and some ground black pepper.
Stir to mix well then spoon the mixture into the prepared tin and press down the surface.
Cover with foil and bake for 30 mins, then remove the foil and bake for a further 20 mins until firm when pressed gently.
Serve with some tomato sauce on the side.