Saturday, 19 November 2011

Nut Roast Wellington

I’m planning to do this rather spiffing Nut Roast Wellington as the centrepiece of our Christmas lunch this year. Having never made one before the last thing I wanted was to put the whole thing together on Christmas morning only to find it didn’t work…! Nightmare! So, a couple of weeks ago, before I went down with the dreaded lurgy, I decided to have a trial run.

The thing I was most worried about was the pastry splitting, allowing all the filling to fall out, but I needn’t have worried; it all held together nicely and went surprisingly well.

Although the instructions look lengthy, it’s actually not as fiddly to do as I expected; it sounds much worse than it is. Now I’ve done it I feel quite confident about doing it again; in fact, I’m looking forward to it.

I shall be serving this on Christmas Day with roast potatoes, maple roast roots (parsnips, carrots and celeriac), sprouts with chestnuts and proper homemade gravy. Lovely!

Incidentally, if you're looking for something to serve with the leftover Wellington, can I suggest this Root Vegetable Gratin? It tastes brilliant and it cleverly uses up any leftover roasted roots from Christmas Day.

Nut Roast mixture:

1 onion, finely chopped
1 tbsp olive oil
200g whole mixed nuts
175g fresh wholemeal breadcrumbs
75g mature cheddar, grated
200ml stock
1 egg, beaten
½ tsp Marmite
1 tsp dried oregano
25g dried cranberries

Mushroom Duxelles:

250g chestnut mushrooms, very finely chopped
1 shallot, finely chopped
few fresh thyme leaves
25g butter

500g pack of ready-rolled puff pastry
1 egg, beaten

For the Mushroom Duxelles:
Sweat the mushrooms, thyme and chopped shallot in the butter over a very low heat until all the liquid has evaporated and you are left with an almost dry mushroom pate. Set aside to cool.

For the Nut Roast:
Sauté the chopped onion in the olive oil until golden and set aside to cool.
Grind the nuts in a food processor until reasonably fine, but still with some texture. Place the ground nuts in a large bowl; add the breadcrumbs, grated cheddar, oregano and cooled onion; mix well. (At this point you can put it in the fridge and finish it off next day, if you want.) Whisk the stock together with the beaten egg and Marmite; add this to the bowl and mix with a fork until the mixture starts to hold together. Remove about 1/3 of the mixture to a small bowl and stir in the dried cranberries.

Assembling the Wellington:
Unroll the pastry onto a lightly floured surface and roll lightly with a rolling pin to make it a bit larger.

Put the nut roast mixture with cranberries in the centre of the pastry and form into a rough rectangle about 8cm x 12cm. Spread the mushrooms duxelles over the top, then cover with the remaining nut roast mixture.

Now the fun begins! Fold the edges of the pastry over like a parcel, to completely enclose the nut roast, using the beaten egg to seal all the edges. You may need to cut off a bit of the pastry to avoid the seams being too thick. (I cut some little Christmas trees from the trimmings and stuck them on top but, quite frankly, that was a waste of time!)

Line a shallow baking tray with non-stick baking paper and, very carefully, turn the Wellington over and lay it, seam-side down, on the baking tray. Brush all over with the rest of the beaten egg and bake at 210C for 20 minutes then turn the temperature down to 180C and cook for a further 35-40 minutes until deep golden brown and cooked through. (I have a fan oven so you may need to adjust timings or temperatures a bit).

It looked a bit like a rather gorgeous loaf of bread when it came out of the oven! Allow to cool for about 20 minutes before cutting in thick slices to serve.

Serves 4 with lots of lovely leftovers to pick at later!

Quick update:  Last year I decided to go down the route of making a plait. To be honest, it was much easier and quicker than the original version and it was just as yummy.

All I did was lay the ready-rolled puff pastry on a floured baking sheet, put the same filling as above length-ways down the centre third, then cut the pastry either side into an even number of strips slightly on the diagonal; brush the strips with beaten egg then fold over the filling, making sure you tuck the ends in neatly. Brush the whole thing with more beaten egg and bake as above. 

And there you go - you have yourself a gorgeous golden Christmas Nut Roast Plait!


  1. Can't wait, it looks amazing!

  2. I have pinned this. Looks super Christmassy!

    1. We loved it - this has now become our 'traditional' Christmas meal. I made it as a plait last year but stupidly didn't take a pic - doh!

  3. I wanted something different for Xmas dinner at my sister's but her daughter didn't fancy all the pastry. I've just tried it out as a nut roast at a pot luck lunch and it met with full approval from everyone, carnivores included, so many thanks for the recipe.

    1. Hi Eileen - so glad you liked it. I also sometimes make it without the pastry but it looks a bit more special for Christmas with its coat on! Regards, Denise.

  4. This is my third year now of doing this Nut Roast Wellington for my daughter in law. I think it is brilliant and she always tells me it is nice. This year I made the same quantity into two smaller ones. I have now frozen the unused and it is there for New Year dinner and Easter. Even though I am not vegetarian, I find it delicious too. It is so easy to prepare and make. I start one day and finish the next and cook it. Best ever. Served with Cranberry Sauce. Thanks you for your recipe.

    1. Thank you for your kind comment - I'm so glad you like it. It's become a tradition for us now, Christmas wouldn't be the same without it! Happy New Year, Denise x

  5. Thanks for the recipe. Loved it, will make it again for sure. 😀

    1. You're very welcome - glad you enjoyed it! Denise x