This is my favourite Christmas main dish; it’s the one I’ve made the last few years and adapted slightly each time.
I use my fail safe olive oil pastry in this wellington, to encase the seasonal ingredients of chestnuts, orange and sage. Red wine gives a gently fruity background flavour alongside the onions, leeks and sage. I love chestnuts from Merchants Gourmet as they are cooked and vacuum packed- perfect for quick cooking time!
This can be made up the day before and stored in the fridge, simply reheat on the day and serve with maple roasted carrots and fennel with sesame seeds and all the trimmings.
For the pastry:
250g plain flour
Pinch of salt
6 tbsp good quality olive oil
50ml cold water
For the filling:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped finely
4 baby leeks, chopped finely
50g mushrooms, chopped finely
1 clove of garlic, crushed
50ml red wine (ensure vegan, I use Co-Operative Sicilian)
1 tsp Marmite
200g roasted chestnuts (I use the vaccum packed chestnuts from Merchant Gourmet), chopped
Zest of 1 unwaxed orange
1 tsp dried sage
1/2 tsp dried thyme
Pinch of sea salt and pepper
1. Start by making the pastry. Add the flour and salt to a bowl and spoon in the olive oil. Work in the olive oil using a fork until you create a breadcrumb texture. Slowly pour in the water and bring together into a pastry dough. Wrap in cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes to rest the pastry.
2. Pre-heat the oven to 200C/ Gas mark 6
3. Whilst the pastry is chilling, prepare the filling. In a pan, add the olive oil, onion, leeks, mushroom and garlic and cook over a medium heat for 3-4 minutes until the onions have softened but not browned. Pour in the red wine and Marmite, reduce the heat slightly and stir until the wine has reduced. Add the chestnuts, orange zest, sage and thyme and cook for a further 5 minutes, stirring frequently until the mixture has thickened. Season with salt and pepper and allow to cool slightly.
4. Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out finely on a floured surface in a rectangular shape. In the centre of the pastry, spoon on the chestnut mix, flattening slightly. Pull in both sides of the pastry to meet in the middle, turn over and place on a baking tray. Score the top of the pastry with a knife. Brush with a little olive oil to give shine to the pastry.
5. Bake in the oven for 30-35 minutes until the pastry is golden.