Betta Living have launched a competition to celebrate National Vegetarian Week which runs from the 19th to the 25th May. With more and more people trying to increase their vegetable intake, achieve their 7 a day or adopt a vegetarian diet, it's the perfect time to try out some new recipes using some underrated veggies that are usually just served as an side dish.
As the mum to a family of vegetarians and vegans, I am always trying out new ideas for wholesome, tasty meals that everyone will enjoy. This recipe is one that I came up with for the Betta Living competition, which is really delicious and is a new way to use super-healthy broccoli. It features a very versatile broccoli pesto in an open topped pie. I love open topped pies as they use only half the pastry, making them much lower in calories, they are so quick and easy to make plus they look really impressive.
1 large broccoli crown
6 oz mushrooms sliced
1 white onion chopped
2 cloves of garlic crushed
1/3 cup of cashews (soaked for 1 - 4 hours)
3 tblspns olive oil
squirt of lemon juice
ground black pepper
1 tblspn Engevita flakes or vegetarian Parmesan
1 teaspn garlic granules
1 sheet of Jus Rol puff pastry (which is vegan friendly)
2 oz grated Cheddar cheese (or vegan cheese)
Firstly, lightly boil or steam a large crown of broccoli florets until tender.
As they are cooking fry the onion until golden brown, add mushrooms and garlic and cook down until all the excess moisture has evaporated.
When the broccoli is drained, put into a food processor and blitz together with cashew nuts.
Add oil, lemon juice and seasoning to taste.
When it's blitzed to a pesto consistency, spread onto the sheet of pastry, leaving an inch all around the edge.
Top with the garlic mushroom mixture.
Fold over the edges of the pastry and glaze with egg or milk. Top with grated cheese. You can sprinkle on some mixed herbs or ground pepper or even mixed seeds to finish.
Put into the oven at GM6, 200 degrees for approximately 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
Once cooked, slice and serve with fresh vegetables for a really healthy, wholesome family dinner. Or serve with roast dinner accompaniments for a great Sunday lunch.
The broccoli pesto can also be used as a topping for bruschetta, a sauce to toss pasta in, added to mayonnaise, added to soups or spread on bread or crackers. It adds a nutritional boost to mash potato or omelettes and it can be used instead of tomato sauce as a pizza topping. It's a great way to get an extra portion of vegetables into the kids.
This is my original recipe for Broccoli Pesto and Mushroom Open Topped Pie and is my entry into the Betta Living Vegetarian Recipe competition.