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How to make an Easter meal your favourite vegan will love

How to make an Easter meal your favourite vegan will love

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This year, I’ve kept things simple but delicious.

This year, I’ve kept things simple but delicious.

How to make an Easter meal your favourite vegan will love
Easter is just around the corner and apart from the fact that eating chocolate for breakfast is acceptable behaviour, is there anything better than a hearty Sunday lunch with your nearest and dearest (pandemic rules applied, of course)? After a week of peanut-butter toast between meetings, there’s something about a big, fancy meal, with a glass of bubbly or two, that really makes me happy – and so excited to get into the kitchen. Plus, does a better nap exist than the one you take on the couch with a belly full of food and your chocolate stash just within reach?

This year, I’ve kept things simple but delicious for Easter and I’ll be serving up a mushroom and “chicken” pie with garlic-fried broccoli, a light but tasty spinach salad and smashed baby potatoes. Dessert will be quick and easy hot-cross bun ice cream sandwiches with a little chocolate treat hidden inside. I hope you have a happy day with your loved ones and a plate piled with food.

Easter lunch recipes

Mushroom and “chicken” pie

Olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 carrot chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

3 cloves garlic, crushed

2 tsp thyme

2 x 250g button mushrooms, sliced

60ml white wine (optional)

3 x 180g Fry's Chicken Style Strips

2.5 cups vegetable stock

2 tbsp cornflour

1 roll puff pastry, defrosted

1. To a large pan over medium heat, add a good glug of olive oil, then add the onion, carrot and celery (aka your mirepoix). Sauté for about 10 minutes or until the veggies are soft and just starting to caramelise.

2. Stir in the crushed garlic and thyme and sauté for a few more minutes.

3. Add the mushrooms and stir to combine (I usually add a bit of salt here because it helps draw the liquid out of the mushrooms). Stir in the wine, if you’re using, and cook the mixture until the mushrooms are soft.

4. Now you can add the stir-fry strips (I pulled my pieces apart a little bit, so there is a mix of chunky pieces and smaller pieces). Stir to combine and let the mixture cook for a few minutes before adding the vegetable stock. Let the mixture simmer.

5. Meanwhile, in a cup, make a slurry by adding a little bit of water to two tablespoons of cornflour. Stir until there are no lumps. Add the slurry to your pie filling and stir to combine. As the cornflour cooks in the stock, it will thicken it.

6. Cook the mixture until you are happy with the consistency, then remove from the heat. Taste to check the seasoning and add more salt, pepper or thyme until you’re happy. Allow to cool for about 30 minutes.  

7. Once your mixture is cool, pour it into your baking dish. Unroll your puff pastry and roll it over the top of your dish, cutting it to fit as you go. Make two slits in the middle of the pastry, so steam can escape. Place the pie into the fridge for about 30 minutes, if you have the time, so that the pastry can cool down – this will ensure crisp, flaky layers.

8. Bake in a 180˚C oven for 50 minutes or until the pastry is golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving.

Did you know? Jus-Rol Puff Pastry (available at Tesco or Waitrose) is vegan.

Garlic-fried broccoli

Olive oil

1 head of broccoli, broken into florets

Salt and pepper

2 cloves garlic, minced

1. Add a glug of olive oil to a heated pan, swirling the pan to make sure the base is covered. Add your broccoli in a single layer (if you want to do a lot of broccoli, you could do two batches) and leave for a few minutes without stirring. You want the broccoli to get a little bit charred (I like it a lot charred). Once it’s begun to char, give the florets a stir, adding salt and pepper as you do.

2. When the broccoli is just about done to your liking, stir in the garlic. Cook for a minute or two more and remove from the heat. Taste a floret to check the seasoning and add more salt or pepper, as desired.

Spinach salad

100g spinach

1/2 red onion, peeled

50g roasted almonds, chopped

2 tsp whole-grain mustard

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp white-wine vinegar

Sugar, salt and pepper, to taste

1. Place the spinach in your serving dish. Slice the onion into half half-moons, separate the pieces and scatter them over the spinach. Next, scatter over the chopped almonds.

2. To make the dressing, mix all the ingredients together and adjust the seasoning to taste. Pour over the salad and toss to combine.

Smashed baby potatoes

700g baby potatoes

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

1. Boil the potatoes in water until just soft. Drain the water and place the potatoes into a baking dish.

2. Using the back of a spoon (or the bottom of a glass), “smash” each potato a little so that it cracks and flattens. Pour over some olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake in the oven with the pie – they should take about 50 minutes.

Hot-cross bun ice cream sandwiches

Hot-cross buns

Aero dark chocolate

Vegan vanilla ice cream

1. Cut the hot-cross buns in half and grill in the oven until golden and toasted on each side. Remove from the oven and immediately place four pieces of chocolate on the base of each bun. Place the top of the bun on the chocolate and wait until the chocolate has melted. After a few minutes, spread the chocolate evenly on the base of the bun.

2. Scoop a generous portion of vegan vanilla ice cream onto the bottom of the hot-cross bun and place the top onto the ice cream. Serve immediately and enjoy!

Easter is just around the corner and apart from the fact that eating chocolate for breakfast is acceptable behaviour, is there anything better than a hearty Sunday lunch with your nearest and dearest (pandemic rules applied, of course)? After a week of peanut-butter toast between meetings, there’s something about a big, fancy meal, with a glass of bubbly or two, that really makes me happy – and so excited to get into the kitchen. Plus, does a better nap exist than the one you take on the couch with a belly full of food and your chocolate stash just within reach?

This year, I’ve kept things simple but delicious for Easter and I’ll be serving up a mushroom and “chicken” pie with garlic-fried broccoli, a light but tasty spinach salad and smashed baby potatoes. Dessert will be quick and easy hot-cross bun ice cream sandwiches with a little chocolate treat hidden inside. I hope you have a happy day with your loved ones and a plate piled with food.

Easter lunch recipes

Mushroom and “chicken” pie

Olive oil

1 onion, chopped

1 carrot chopped

2 stalks celery, chopped

3 cloves garlic, crushed

2 tsp thyme

2 x 250g button mushrooms, sliced

60ml white wine (optional)

3 x 180g Fry's Chicken Style Strips

2.5 cups vegetable stock

2 tbsp cornflour

1 roll puff pastry, defrosted

1. To a large pan over medium heat, add a good glug of olive oil, then add the onion, carrot and celery (aka your mirepoix). Sauté for about 10 minutes or until the veggies are soft and just starting to caramelise.

2. Stir in the crushed garlic and thyme and sauté for a few more minutes.

3. Add the mushrooms and stir to combine (I usually add a bit of salt here because it helps draw the liquid out of the mushrooms). Stir in the wine, if you’re using, and cook the mixture until the mushrooms are soft.

4. Now you can add the stir-fry strips (I pulled my pieces apart a little bit, so there is a mix of chunky pieces and smaller pieces). Stir to combine and let the mixture cook for a few minutes before adding the vegetable stock. Let the mixture simmer.

5. Meanwhile, in a cup, make a slurry by adding a little bit of water to two tablespoons of cornflour. Stir until there are no lumps. Add the slurry to your pie filling and stir to combine. As the cornflour cooks in the stock, it will thicken it.

6. Cook the mixture until you are happy with the consistency, then remove from the heat. Taste to check the seasoning and add more salt, pepper or thyme until you’re happy. Allow to cool for about 30 minutes.  

7. Once your mixture is cool, pour it into your baking dish. Unroll your puff pastry and roll it over the top of your dish, cutting it to fit as you go. Make two slits in the middle of the pastry, so steam can escape. Place the pie into the fridge for about 30 minutes, if you have the time, so that the pastry can cool down – this will ensure crisp, flaky layers.

8. Bake in a 180˚C oven for 50 minutes or until the pastry is golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving.

Did you know? Jus-Rol Puff Pastry (available at Tesco or Waitrose) is vegan.

Garlic-fried broccoli

Olive oil

1 head of broccoli, broken into florets

Salt and pepper

2 cloves garlic, minced

1. Add a glug of olive oil to a heated pan, swirling the pan to make sure the base is covered. Add your broccoli in a single layer (if you want to do a lot of broccoli, you could do two batches) and leave for a few minutes without stirring. You want the broccoli to get a little bit charred (I like it a lot charred). Once it’s begun to char, give the florets a stir, adding salt and pepper as you do.

2. When the broccoli is just about done to your liking, stir in the garlic. Cook for a minute or two more and remove from the heat. Taste a floret to check the seasoning and add more salt or pepper, as desired.

Spinach salad

100g spinach

1/2 red onion, peeled

50g roasted almonds, chopped

2 tsp whole-grain mustard

2 tbsp olive oil

1 tbsp white-wine vinegar

Sugar, salt and pepper, to taste

1. Place the spinach in your serving dish. Slice the onion into half half-moons, separate the pieces and scatter them over the spinach. Next, scatter over the chopped almonds.

2. To make the dressing, mix all the ingredients together and adjust the seasoning to taste. Pour over the salad and toss to combine.

Smashed baby potatoes

700g baby potatoes

Olive oil

Salt and pepper

1. Boil the potatoes in water until just soft. Drain the water and place the potatoes into a baking dish.

2. Using the back of a spoon (or the bottom of a glass), “smash” each potato a little so that it cracks and flattens. Pour over some olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Bake in the oven with the pie – they should take about 50 minutes.

Hot-cross bun ice cream sandwiches

Hot-cross buns

Aero dark chocolate

Vegan vanilla ice cream

1. Cut the hot-cross buns in half and grill in the oven until golden and toasted on each side. Remove from the oven and immediately place four pieces of chocolate on the base of each bun. Place the top of the bun on the chocolate and wait until the chocolate has melted. After a few minutes, spread the chocolate evenly on the base of the bun.

2. Scoop a generous portion of vegan vanilla ice cream onto the bottom of the hot-cross bun and place the top onto the ice cream. Serve immediately and enjoy!

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