We really enjoy a good old nut roast – it’s a veggie classic, completely adaptable and a great alternative to a meat roast dinner. Perfect for Christmas, Thanksgiving, or any other festive occasion.
Whilst we’re trying to reduce our meat intake, we’re not fully vegetarian, and I decided to have a go at experimenting with the traditional nut roast to see if I could come up with something a bit different for Christmas.
I’m really pleased with the result and I hope you’ll enjoy it if you decide to try the recipe.
The base recipe for the nut roast is really delicious in it’s own right, so do give it a go without bacon if you prefer – you can follow the exact same recipe, just don’t bother lining the tin with bacon!
You can also double-up the quantity with no problem – go nuts!
Festive Maple Syrup Glazed Bacon-Wrapped Nut Roast
- 200 g Chestnuts cooked
- 200 g Puy Lentils ready to eat pack
- 150 g Dried Apricots chopped
- 150 g Mixed Nuts unsalted, chopped
- 350 g Smoked Streaky Bacon Rashers approx.
- 1 Egg large
- 1 Carrot large, or two small, finely diced
- 2 Celery Sticks finely diced
- 1 Brown Onion finely diced
- 2 tsp Dried Rosemary
- 2 tsp Dried Thyme
- 2 tsp Dried Oregano
- 2 tsp Dried Sage
- 4 tbsp Maple Syrup
- Olive Oil for frying
- Get a pan on the hob on a low heat with some oil, then fry the onions gently for ten minutes or so until softened.
- Finely dice the carrots and celery. Add to the pan with onions and continue to fry for another 15/20 minutes or so until softened.
- Stir through the herbs, then take off the heat and leave to cool.
- Chop the apricots, mixed nuts and cooked chestnuts. You can blitz them in a food processor – but I quite like to chop them by hand, to achieve a coarser texture.
- In a large bowl mix the chopped apricots, mixed nuts, chestnuts, cooled veg, your ready-to-eat lentils and a decent crack of black pepper. Have a taste to see if it needs a bit of salt – although remember the addition of bacon will add more salt. Once you're happy with the taste, add the egg to help bind the mixture together.
- Line a 1lb loaf tin with the rashers of bacon.
- Make sure the rashers hang over the sides of loaf tin so you can tuck them over the top later on.
- Pack the nut and veg mix into the tin.
- Put a couple of extra rashers on top, then fold the remaining bacon over the mix to create a snug package.
- At this point, pop the loaf in the fridge to firm up whilst you get the oven heated up ready for cooking. Alternatively, you can cover with cling film and refrigerate over night.
- To cook: get the oven heated to 180°c. Remove any cling film and cover the roast loosely with foil.
- Roast covered for 30 minutes. After this time, take the foil off the nut roast, then put back into the oven, uncovered, for 15 minutes.
- For the final stage, take the nut roast out of the oven and carefully run a knife around the edge to loosen the loaf. The thinner the bacon, the more delicate you need to be. Then – very carefully – tip upside down onto a baking tray lined with foil.
- Brush maple syrup all over the bacon and return the glazed nut roast to the oven for a final 10 minutes or so until the maple glaze has browned.
- Serve alongside your favourite roast dinner trimmings.