The Mushroomoreish Christmas

It’s been a year. I now have invested in a cast iron skillet. So I will be making pecan pie while actually following the recipe! It’ll be next week, so I’m preparing my head right now. *updated with post-pics*

Mixed Mushroom Stuffing – Jamie Oliver
Whole Roasted Cauliflower – Jamie Oliver
Parmesan Brussels Sprouts – Jamie Oliver
Roast Potatoes
Hugh’s Vegan Gravy – Jamie Oliver
Upside-Down Pecan Pie – Martha Stewart

I also have a new best friend, Jamie Oliver. My little sister introduced me to him and as this year has gone on and I have tried out more and more of his vegan and vegetarian recipes, the respect has grown.

I’ve just gone through what I need to buy – Sainsbury’s ended up being cheaper and had everything that I needed in their own range.

Um.. I’m gonna have to get a casserole pan for the cauliflower and maybe a strainer for the gravy…I’ll see what I can find in TK Maxx tomorrow….

Night before or to start with: 1/2 Pate Brisse for Pecan Pie

1. 1 1/4 cup plain flour, 1/2 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp sugar in bowl and combine. Add 1/2 cup chilled unsalted butter and and combine until coarse meal.

2. Add ice water until dough just holds together.

3. Turn dough out into work surface. Place on sheet of plastic wrap, flatten and form disc.

4. Wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour before using.

1. Start with the Cauliflower. Oven at 180 C.

2. Peel 4 cloves of garlic, add to pestle and mortar with 1 tsp paprika and half the thyme leaves (1/4 bunch). Bash well to a rough paste, then muddle in 2 tablespoons of olive oil and season. (Improvise). Zest 1 lemon into a separate bowl, set aside.

3. Trim outer cauliflower leaves. Trim away and discard stalk so cauliflower can sit flat, then cut a cross into the base. Rub all over with paprika paste, then place in medium casserole pan. Drizzle some 2 tbsp water and 2 tbsp stock and squeeze lemon juice on top. Cover and pop in the hot oven for 1 hour 20 minutes, or until tender, removing the lid for the final 20 minutes.


4. Then do some mixed mushroom stuffing. Peel and finely chop 2 shallots and 4 cloves of garlic and roughly chop 350g mixed wild mushrooms, 400g closed cup or chestnut mushrooms. Pick the thyme leaves (1/2 bunch) and tear the stale bread (350g) into small chunks.


5. Lightly toast 100g of pecans in a dry frying pan, then roughly chop.

6. Pick and roughly chop 1 bunch of fresh-leaf parsley.

7. Cover 25g dried porcini with 300ml of boiling water and leave aside to rehydrate.

8. Heat 80ml olive oil in a large, wide pan and add shallot and garlic. Cook over a medium heat, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 8 minutes, or until the shallot is softened but not coloured.

9. Drain the soaked porcini over a bowl, reserving the liquid. Add these and the rest of the mushrooms to the pan along with the bay and thyme leaves and cook until all the mushrooms are well softened. If they release a lot of liquid, pour it onto the diced bread and carry on cooking.

10. When mushrooms are tender and browned, tip the mixture into a large bowl and leave to cool completely.

11. Cauliflower. If it’s been 1 hour, take lid off for last 20 minutes.

12. Mushroom stuffing. Once the cooked mushroom mixture has cooled, add the chunks of bread, and good pinch of sea salt and black pepper, the pecans and about half of the porcini’s reserved soaking liquid (pour through sieve first to stop any grit getting through). Combine well. If too dry; add more of the porcini liquid.

13. Add most of the parsley and stir it through then tip the stuffing into a lightly greased baking dish of approximately 20cm x 25cm and cover with foil.


14. Place in the oven and bake for 35 minutes (then remove the foil and cook for further 10 minutes.

15. Back to cauliflower. Take pan out of the oven, pour in plum tomatoes, tearing or slicing them up into chunks. Sprinkle over the lemon zest and pick over the remaining thyme leaves (1/4 bunch). Return the pan to the oven for a further 10 minutes (until cauliflower golden)

16. Meanwhile, place medium frying pan over a medium-low heat. Add the almonds (40g) and toast gently for 2 to 3 minutes, or until golden, leave to cool. Sprinkle toasted almonds and roughly chopped parsley leaves on top of cauliflower and drizzle extra olive oil.

17. Gravy. Make 750 hot veg stock.

18. Heat some oil in large, wide saucepan over high heat. Add 250g chestnut mushrooms roughly chopped. When they’ve kind of browned and reduced, add the 2 medium onions, roughly chopped and peeled. When they’re browned and reduced.

19. Cut carrots, half, diagonal; colour on the onions and bottom of the pan; get the carrots in.

20. Thyme, bayleaves.

21. Sprinkle of four (about 4 tbsp) – cook it out for half a minute or so.

22. Add the 750ml hot veg stock.

23. Celery. Simmer for 6-7 minutes.

24. Check on Cauliflower. If done, change oven to 220.


25. Gravy. Slosh of black coffee. (couple of tablespoons)

26. 1/2 tbsp soy sauce. Crush with a potato masher – maximise flavours. Salt. Pepper. Stir.

27. Strain

28. Brussel sprouts. Trim and halve 1 kg brussel sprouts, place on large baking tray. Add 2 tbsp olive oil, grate over 1 lemon’s worth of zest, sprinkle with chilli flakes, pinch of sea salt and black pepper. Mix with hands to coat.

29. Roast for 10 minutes – sprouts should caramelise in places – when that happens, scatter over parmesan and roast for further 15 minutes, until cheese is crisp and golden brown and sprouts tender.

30. While brussel sprouts roasting. Start Pecan pie. Cast-iron skillet, medium heat. Combine 12 tbsp unsalted butter, 1/2 cup honey, 1 cup packed light-brown sugar, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, bring to boil – let boil 4 minutes.

31. Add 4 cups pecan halves and 3/4 cup double cream, boil for 3 minutes more.


32. Remove from heat and set aside about 30 minutes to cool.

33. Clean, lightly floured surface roll out Pate Brisse to approximately 1/8 inch thick, 13 inch diameter circle.

34. Use wooden spoon to gently mound pecans and caramel slightly in centre of skillet, leaving gap between pecans and edge.

35. Place pastry over skillet, carefully tucking the dough down against the edge of the skillet and around the edges of the mound of pecans. Trim excess.

36. Place two rimmed baking sheets, one on top of the other underneath the skillet to catch any drips while pie bakes and provide insulation for caramel.

37. Place skillet in oven. Bake pie until dough is turning golden brown (10 mins).


38. Reduce heat to 180 C and continue baking until pastry is cooked through and caramel is bubbling up around the edges – about 30 minutes more.

39. Remove and let cool about 20 minutes. Carefully invert the pie onto parchment lined tray or baking sheet. Caramel is very hot (be careful). If pie does not release easily from skillet, heat the skillet over medium heat for about 30 seconds.

40. Serve warm, with Vanilla Ice cream


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