Any suggestions for great vegetarian recipes for Christmas?

Vegetarian recipes

Apprentice chef Mel, says “I love these two vegetarian recipes and we get excellent feedback from our customers whenever they are on our menu. The days of vegetarians only being able to eat nut roast at Christmas are well and truly behind us. I hope you enjoy them and please let us know how you get on with the recipes.”

Wild Mushroom Risotto with Chestnut (serves 4)

Stuff you’ll need

10g butter
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
160g arborio rice, washed
240ml strong veg stock
40g parmesan cheese
25g whipped cream
40g horn of plenty mushrooms (cleaned)
freshly cut chives
40g crushed chestnuts
30ml champagne
salt and freshly ground pepper
180g wild mushroom sauce (see separate instructions)

10g butter
1 medium shallot, finely chopped
350g mixed wild mushrooms, finely sliced
5g flour for dusting
60ml Madeira/white wine
100ml double cream
150ml vegetable stock
3 ml lemon juice
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Get stuck in

Make the wild mushroom sauce with the separate ingredients as follows:

Melt the butter in a saucepan and gently sauté the shallots until transparent. Add the mushrooms and cook until softened. Dust with the flour and stir in. Add the Madeira (or white wine) and reduce. Add the vegetable stock and reduce. Add the cream and reduce again by half. Add the lemon juice and the freshly ground salt and pepper. Set to one side.

Now for the risotto, melt the butter in a heavy bottomed saucepan. Add the shallots and sweat to soften without colouring. Add the rice and stir constantly until well coated and translucent. Add 160ml of the stock, stirring gently. Cook the rice for 10 minutes. Spread the rice onto a clean tray and allow to cool. Reserve.

When you are ready to serve, add the following ingredients separately to a saucepan stirring frequently: the remaining stock, risotto rice, mushroom sauce, parmesan cheese, whipped cream and horn of plenty mushrooms. Keep stirring with a non metallic spoon; the risotto is liable to stick at this point. Now add the chives and finally the champagne. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Spoon into serving dishes and add the crushed chestnuts to the top of the risotto.

Potato Rosti with Ratatouille and Goat’s Cheese (serves 4)

Stuff you’ll need

For the Rosti
750g Maris Piper potatoes, peeled
2.5 tbsp. olive oil
1/2 small onion
butter for greasing

80-100g soft goat’s cheese, unrinded, cut into thick slices

Get stuck in

Heat the oven to 190°C. Boil the potatoes whole for 5 minutes, drain, then place in a bowl of chilled water. When cool enough to handle, pat the potatoes dry and roughly grate into a large bowl. Toss with the oil as you go to stop them from sticking. Roughly grate the onion and squeeze out any excess juice, then stir into the potatoes.

Place a baking sheet in the oven for 5 minutes to warm through. Liberally grease a loose-bottomed cake time with butter. Scatter the potato over the tin, trying not to pack it down, then dot all over the top with butter. Place on the hot baking sheet and bake in the oven for 1 hr 20 mins until the potatoes are cooked through and crisp on top.

When the rosti is almost cooked, cut the aubergines into quarters lengthways, then cut the quarters into 2.5cm slices. Cut the courgettes into 2.5 cm slices. Deseed the peppers and cut into bite-sized pieces. Roughly chop the tomatoes and then mix the aubergine, courgette, pepper and tomato with the other ingredients. Sweat off in a pan for 5 minutes. Taste and add more seasoning as needed.

Heat the grill to a medium temperature. Cut the rosti into four pieces (you can use a pastry cutter if you want a nice round shape), top with the ratatouille and a slice of goat’s cheese. Place under the grill for a few minutes until the goat’s cheese has begun to melt. Serve with a nice crisp salad.