Spiced Lentil Root Vegetable Strudel
I wanted to create an exciting alternative recipe to a classic nut roast because not every vegetarian Christmas has to be a nut roast! This nut roast is packed with seasonal root vegetables and with the addition of the dried spices, makes a super flavoursome dish!
150g Uncooked Green Lentils (cooked weight 350g)
1 Vegetable Stock Cube
2 Sweet Potatoes
Spice Mix – 2 tbsp Cumin, ½ tsp Dried Chilli Flakes, 1 tbsp Turmeric
1 Red Onion
3 Garlic Cloves
1 Fresh Rosemary Sprig
6 Fresh Sage Leaves
1 tbsp Harissa (or Tomato Purée)
100g Ground Almonds
1 Lime (optional)
50g Sesame Seeds
1 Pack (250g) Filo Pastry
100ml Olive oil or 100g Butter
Salt & Pepper – I use Flaky Sea Salt
Equipment – Chopping board, kitchen knife, saucepan, sieve, baking tray, vegetable peeler, potato masher, frying pan, pastry brush & bread knife
Step by Step Instructions
Step 1 – Prepare & Cook Root Vegetables
Turn Oven On To 190C
Peel the sweet potatoes and parsnip and cut them into 1cm cubes.
Add to the baking tray and add the spice mix. Drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Roast in the oven for 20 minutes until the vegetables are cooked and soft.
Once they are cooked add to a large mixing bowl and mash with a potato masher.
Step 2 – Cook Lentils
Wash lentils and add to the saucepan. Cover with plenty of cold water so that the water comes up 5cm higher than the lentils.
Add stock cube to the pan.
Bring the water up to the boil and cook according to the packet instructions.
Drain the lentils in the sieve and run cold water over them.
Add them to the large mixing bowl with the mashed root vegetables.
Peel and crush the garlic cloves. Pick the leaves of the fresh rosemary and thyme and finely chop them with the crushed garlic.
Add the crushed garlic and chopped herbs, spice mix and tomato purée to the cooked vegetables and chorizo/ pancetta and cook for 2 minutes.
Add the red wine, chopped tomatoes and chicken stock to the sauce pan. Simmer and reduce for 10 minutes.
Once the sauce has thickened and reduced taste it and season it with the Worcestershire sauce, lemon juice, salt and pepper
Step 3 – Prepare & Cook Onion
Peel onion and dice it up.
Heat a frying pan and add 1 tbsp olive oil. Add the diced onion and cook for 5-8 minutes until soft.
Whilst the onion is cooking, peel and crush garlic cloves.
Wash the rosemary sprig and sage leaves in cold water and pat dry.
Pick the rosemary leaves and roughly chop.
Chop the sage leaves.
Once the onion is soft, add the garlic, fresh herbs and harissa and cook for 2 minutes.
Add the cooked onion to the large mixing bowl.
Step 4 – Finish Strudel Mix
Combine the ground almonds with the mashed root vegetables, lentils and red onion. Season the mix with salt and pepper.
Taste the mix and if you think it needs a little acidity, add a squeeze of lime juice.
Step 5 – Assemble Strudel
On a clean work surface lay out one sheet of filo pastry so the longer side is directly facing you. Cover the rest of the filo pastry sheets with a clean tea towel so they don’t dry out as you are assembling the strudel.
Brush the whole filo pastry sheet with olive oil (or melted butter). Sprinkle sesame seeds over the filo pastry sheet and add the second sheet of filo pastry.
Repeat this process until you have layered up 7 sheets of filo pastry, sprinkling sesame seeds in between each layer.
Add the strudel mix to the bottom half of the filo pastry, leaving a 2 cm gap around the edge.
Brush the exposed filo pastry with olive oil (or melted butter).
Fold the shorter sides of the filo pastry in, on top of the strudel mix.
Fold the bottom long side in, on top of the strudel mix.
Brush the folded sides with olive oil (or melted butter).
Bring the long top end of the layered filo pastry sheets in to meet the folded bottom long end of the filo strudel.
Brush the shaped strudel with olive oil (or melted butter) and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
If you are making this ahead, freeze it at this stage and bake from frozen for 25-30 minutes on Christmas Day.
Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes until it is golden brown and the pastry sheets are crisp and cooked.