Monday, 5 April 2010

Hereford Hot-pot (vegetarian)

I made this in the week – lovely served with homemade bread. 


1 dsp sunflower oil

3 medium leeks, washed and sliced

1 large onion, sliced

325g/12 oz swede, cubed

225g/8 oz carrots, sliced

25g/1 oz plain flour

550ml/1 pint dry cider

1 tbsp tomato puree

1 tbsp yeast extract

1 small dessert apple, cored and sliced

175g/ 6 oz pre cooked red lentils

450g/1 lb potatoes, parboiled for 3 minutes and sliced

75g/ 3 oz cheddar cheese, grated

Salt and pepper

Serves 4.

Pre heat the oven to 180c/350f/gas 4.

Heat the oil in a heavy-based flameproof casserole and sweat the leeks, onions, swede and carrots over a low heat, covered with a lid, for about 15 minutes until softened a little.

Meanwhile in a small saucepan, mix the flour to a paste with a little of the cider over a medium heat. Gradually add the rest of the cider, stirring. Mix in the tomato puree, yeast extract, salt and pepper.

Chop the apple and add it to the vegetables in the casserole together with the lentils, then pour the cider sauce over. Arrange the potato slices on top, put tiny dots of the butter over them and scatter the cheese over the top.

Cover and bake for 1½ hours. Uncover for the last 30 minutes of cooking time to allow the topping to brown.

If it looks like getting too dry when you remove the lid for the last half hour, carefully add a little water in between the layer of potato and the side of the pan.

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