Sunday, 2 October 2011

Layered Harvest Vegetable Pie (vegan)



I remembered this delicious and attractive pie as an item from the menu of a vegetarian cafe I once worked in, and decided to celebrate our continuing allotment harvest of wonderful organic vegetables by making my own version, substituting the Sosmix, Branston, mushrooms and leeks.


 Serve it warm or cold with some crispy fresh green salad and you have a complete meal which looks good enough to serve to guests. There is nothing difficult about preparing and assembling it but it would be quite time-consuming to make it all at the same time, so I made the pastry, chutney and dal layer in advance- or you could also use Sosmix instead of the dal mixture for the bottom layer. (The pastry is a little easier to handle if you leave it to chill in the fridge for a while.) Although this recipe is vegan, you could, if you want, add a top layer of mature Cheddar cheese on top of the chutney layer.  If you use the pastry and filling recipe from my post "Vegan "Sausage" rolls" (13.4.11) then you will have enough left over to make 5 or 6 of the rolls which you can bake as well as the pie. If you don't want to do that, then halve the quantities or follow the slightly different recipe below. This pie easily serves 6-8 people



Crust: Wholemeal pastry made with 350g organic wholemeal flour, 125ml organic cold-pressed sunflower oil, 50ml water, 1/2 tsp seasalt and more water to mix. You will also need a handful of organic sunflower seeds to scatter over the lid of the pie.
"Sausage" filling: 
150g (dry weight) chana dal
100g dry weight quinoa/ bulgar wheat
2 tsps hing
2 tsps seasalt
1 tab yeast extract/ nutritional yeast
mixed herbs/ rosemary, sage and thyme to taste (I used a generous handful of fresh herbs from my garden)
paprika and black pepper to taste
Chutney:
600g chopped stoned organic plums or 500g diced apples with 100g damson puree from the garden (see my post "Plum Chutneys and Jams", 18.9.11 for how to make the damson puree)
50g peeled and grated fresh ginger
200g gour/ brown sugar
4 tabs rice bran oil
2 tabs ume plum seasoning
a small cinnamon stick, halved
1 tsp seasalt
turmeric and hing to taste
Make the chutney by combining all the ingredients in a pan, simmering until it's starting to cook and then boiling until setting point is reached. Remember to remove the cinnamon before use. You will have about 1/2 a jar left over after using in the pie.
Layers:
Orange/ red: 2 large tomatoes, sliced, and1 1/2 cups (250ml) grated organic pumpkin/ carrot/ sweet potato
Green: cooked organic runner beans or an organic courgette, thinly sliced (you could grill it first  for extra    flavour)
Yellow: 1-1 1/2 cups sweetcorn

To assemble and bake:
  •  First, boil the dal and quinoa/ TVP whilst cooking the chutney and making the pastry
  • Add the seasonings to the dal mixture and set aside
  • Oil a 10" round loose-bottomed springform  cake tin  (it should be quite deep, so that you can fit all the layers in) and roll out the pastry to line the bottom and sides, reserving enough for the lid
  • Spread a 2cm-thick layer of the "sausage" mixture in the bottom
  • Cover with a layer of sliced tomatoes, then the grated orange vegetables
  • Cover the orange layer with the courgettes/ runner beans
  • Cover the green layer with sweetcorn
  • Spread chutney care fully over the top.The layers should have filled the cake tin to the top by now.
  • Roll out and put on the pastry lid, seal with water and pinch round the edge. Cut a small cross in the centre and decorate with pastry leaves. Brush with salted water and scatter the organic sunflower seeds over the top.
  • Bake in an oven preheated to 200C (or 225C if it's not a fan oven) for about half an hour- the top should be brown and the vegetables inside tender.
  • Unclip and remove the side of the tin, cut carefully and serve with salad or steamed vegetables. (Don't worry if the first slice reveals some juice; you can mop it up and there won't be any more after that slice.)







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