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Christmas Dinner

The Christmas Dinner is the main Christmas meal and is traditionally eaten at mid-day or early afternoon on Christmas Day or the evening of Christmas Eve in Britain. A traditional English and British Christmas dinner includes roast turkey or goose (mock turkey), Brussels sprouts, roast potatoes, traditional bread sauce, cranberry sauce, rich nutty stuffing, tiny sausages wrapped in (mock) bacon (Pigs in Blanket) and lashings of hot gravy.

For dessert a rich, fruity pudding is served, doused in flaming brandy – said to ward off evil spirits. This pudding is called the Christmas Pudding.

Ingredients

Christmas Dinner spread, vegan-styleMock turkey recipe
Mock bacon recipe
Bread sauce recipe
Christmas pudding recipe

Brussels sprouts and chestnuts:
4 Tbsp soft margarine
Finely grated zest of ½ orange
Small handful finely chopped fresh parsley
1 kg Brussels sprouts
2 cups of roughly chopped, cooked and peeled chestnuts

Roast Potatoes:
1.8 kg large, floury potatoes
1 cup sunflower oil
3/4 tsp celery salt

Gingerbread stuffing:
3 Tbsp margarine
1 Tbsp vegetable oil
¼ finely chopped onion
750g (8 Oz) mock bacon
2 peeled, cored and finely chopped eating apples
1 orange zest
450g loaf gingerbread (or 2 smaller ones to give you 450g)
3 Tbsp egg substitute
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper

Cooking Instructions

Brussels sprouts and chestnuts:
  • Make the orange margarine:- Put the margarine, zest and parsley in a bowl, season, and beat until smooth. Wrap in greaseproof paper and chill for 15 minutes.
  • Wash the sprouts in salted water. Drain, rinse, and discard any damaged leaves. Bring a large pan of water to the boil, add the sprouts and blanch for 3-4 minutes. Drain and plunge into cold water. Repeat, until cool, then drain and set aside.
  • Just before serving, melt half the orange margarine in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the sprouts and chestnuts and cook, stirring, for 2-3 minutes, until tender.
  • Season and put in a serving dish. Dot the rest of the butter over the top to serve.

Tip To freeze: Make the orange margarine and wrap in cling film. Freeze for up to 1 month. Defrost in the fridge for 24 hours, then complete the recipe.

Roast Potatoes:
  • Cut the potatoes into halves or quarters depending on their size. Put into a large pan of cold, well-salted water, cover and bring to the boil. Once boiling, cook for 7 minutes or until soft on the outside but still hard in the centre. Drain and return to the pan. When the steam has died down, shake the potatoes a bit to rough up the edges.
  • Meanwhile, pour the oil into a large roasting tin that will happily take the potatoes in one layer (otherwise they won’t crisp up). Heat in the oven for 5 minutes or until the oil is hot.
  • Carefully tip the potatoes into the hot oil, gently toss to evenly coat, then pour away the excess oil – this ensures the potatoes are dry and crisp, not greasy. Return to the oven and roast at 190°C for 1 hour, turning halfway. Increase the oven temperature to 200°C and cook for a further 15 minutes, until crisp and golden.
  • Season with celery salt to serve.
Gingerbread stuffing:
  • Heat the margarine and oil in a large wide saucepan. Add the onion and apple to the pan and cook until both ingredients have softened and turned golden in colour (about 10-15 minutes).
  • Add the mock bacon and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  • Add the orange zest and mix well.
  • Remove the pan from the heat and set a side to cool a little.
  • Roughly cut the gingerbread into clumps and crumbs and add the pieces to the stuffing and mix well.
  • Add the substitute egg and pepper to the stuffing, and press the stuffing into a buttered baking dish. Bake the stuffing in a hot oven with your mock turkey for about 45 minutes.
  • To serve, let the cooked stuffing sit in its dish for a good 10 minutes after it has been removed from the oven, before turning it out on to a clean serving plate and slicing it.

Serve the mock turkey with stuffing, veggie sausages, mock bacon, sprouts, carrots, chestnuts, mashed and roast potatoes and gravy. For dessert, serve the Christmas pudding with rum or brandy sauce. Get drunk and be merry. :)

Serves 6 people

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