This is a lovely dish, perfect for a celebration. It's quite involved but well worth it, trust me! If you cook it the day before, press well and chill it, it will be even easier to serve!
- 6 tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp ground cumin
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp ground coriander
- 1 tsp fenugreek
- ½ tsp ground turmeric
- 2 medium onions finely chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 500 g x 250g microwaveable coconut rice, re heated
- 400 g Bijoux canned green lentils, rinsed
- 90 g toasted pinenuts
- 4 large courgettes, washed and again sliced in 3/4cm slices lengthways
- 1 medium butternut squash, peeled and cut into long 3/4cm slices, must be peeled
- 580 g roasted peppers, (2 x 290g jars) drained well
- 100 ml strong vegetable stock, approx.
- 8 Portabello mushrooms
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 100 g honey roasted cashew nuts
- 1 pinch chilli powder
- 2 tbsp runny honey or maple syrup
- 2 tbsp parsley, chopped
- 4 tbsp basil, chopped
- 2 tbsp coriander, chopped
- 1 pinch chilli flakes
- 1 tbsp capers, rinsed well
- 1 garlic clove, chopped finely
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 150 g crème fraîche
- pepper and salt to taste
- Preheat the oven to 200C gas 6.
- Heat the 6 tbsp of oil in a saucepan, add the spices. Cook for a minute, then add the onions and garlic.
- Cook for a good 10 minutes, browning REALLY well.
- Next, add the warmed rice sachets, lentils, pinenuts, salt and pepper and mix well.
- Place a 32cm x 24cm x 5cm deep baking dish onto a board and place half the sliced courgettes, so it covers the bottom perfectly. Season well.
- Spoon over half the rice/lentil mix and spread over evenly. Season well.
- Arrange the squash slices on top, making sure they fit evenly and perfectly, season well.
- Spoon on the last of the rice.
- Lay the last courgette slice on top, then cut open the red peppers and lay on top, so you end up with a perfectly full and pepper topped casserole.
- Spoon over the veg stock cover with foil tightly and cook in the oven for 1 hour.
- After an hour, remove foil, lightly oil the peppers.
- Place back in the oven uncovered and drive off the moisture until the bake is nice and firm, about 30 minutes.
- Remove from the oven, press down with a potato masher well, cool, cover with film and chill well, best overnight.
- When ready to serve, turn on the grill and season the mushrooms well with salt, pepper and a drizzle of oil. Cook until slightly shrivelled and with a meaty texture.
- Place the nuts into a small bowl, add the chilli powder honey or maple syrup, mix well, and pop into the oven to glaze nicely. Take care; they will burn.
- Finally, place the herbs, capers, olive oil, chilli and garlic into a small hand blender and blitz to a smooth green paste.
- Spoon into a bowl, add salt, pepper and the créme fraiche and mix well.
- Cut nice neat squares, cover with cling film and microwave until warmed through perfectly.
- Serve in a deep bowl, topped with a grilled mushroom, spoon or two of the créme fraiche and a few toasted nuts.
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