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Vegan Winter Stew with Gluten Free ‘Cheese’ Dumplings

Serves: 6

Prep time: 1 hour

Cook time: 2 hours plus stock cooking



Ingredients:

Stock-

2 brown onions

1 whole bulb of garlic

3 tbsp rapeseed oil

2 sticks of celery

2 carrots

1 leek


Stew-

2 tbsp rapeseed oil

2-3 red onion, roughly chopped

4 bay leaves

2 rosemary

Few sprigs of thyme

5 garlic

500ml red wine

1/4 butternut squash, peeled and cut to around 2cm cubes

2 parsnip, peeled and cut to around 2cm cubes

1-1.5 litre veg stock

25g gluten free plain flour

1 tsp dijon mustard.

300g mushrooms, button, chestnut or portobello

150g whole chestnuts (optional)


Dumplings-

225g gluten free self raising flour, plus more for dusting

1 tsp xantham gum

1 tsp baking power

1 tbsp nutritional yeast

1/2 tsp white pepper

50g margarine

125g vegan smoked cheese, grated

2 tbsp herbs, finely chopped, I suggest chives

85ml vegan milk


Method:

  1. To make the stock, preheat the oven to 180C. Cut the top off off the garlic bulb and drizzle with a 1 tbsp oil and salt. Slice the onions in half, you don’t need to peel them. Arrange both on a foiled lined baking sheet and roast in the oven for 30-40 minutes.

  2. Heat the remaining oil in a large pan. Very roughly chop the celery, carrots and leek and add to the pan. Cook for 10 minutes, stirring regularly, until slightly charred.

  3. Once the onions have softened, squish the garlic between your fingers a little and add both to the pan with the other vegetables. Add 2-3 litres of cold water and bring to the boil. Reduce the temperature and simmer with the lid on for 2-4 hours, topping up with cold water if needed.* Strain the stock through a fine mesh sieve lined with food grade muslin and set aside until needed.

  4. For the stew, add the oil to a large pan on a medium heat. Once hot, add the onions and cook for 5-10 minutes until softened, stirring regularly so they don’t catch.

  5. Add the herbs and garlic and cook for 2 minutes before adding the wine. Turn the heat up a little and allow the wine to reduce by a third.

  6. Add in the squash and the parsnip, followed by around a litre of stock. Set aside around 100ml of the stock and whisk in the flour; this will thicken your sauce towards the end of cooking.

  7. Cover the stew and simmer for around 45 minutes until the vegetables have softened. Preheat the oven again to 200C.

  8. For the dumplings; sift together the flour, xantham and baking powder into a large bowl. Add in the nutritional yeast, a large pinch of salt and the white pepper and mix briefly. Rub in the margarine into the flour with your fingers, until you have a breadcrumb-like texture.

  9. Stir in the grated cheese and herbs and then make a well in the middle. Slowly add the milk, stirring as you do until you have a firm dough, you may need a little more or a little less than 85ml.

  10. Roll the dough out to around 2cm thick on a lightly floured work surface and cut out with a 4cm ring cutter. Arrange on a lined baking tray and chilli in the fridge until the vegetables in the stew have softened. **

  11. Once the vegetables are cooked, taste the sauce and season. Add the mustard and stir in the flour and stock mixture. Add a little more stock if the liquid in the stew has reduced significantly.

  12. Break the mushrooms up a little if they are on the larger size and add to the pan, along with the chestnuts, if using.

  13. Carefully arrange the dumpling on the surface of the stew, cover with a lid and put into the hot oven. Cook the stew covered for 15 minutes, then uncover and cook for a further 15minutes. Serve with steamed green vegetables.

*If you have any scraps from the mushrooms, eg stalks or peeled skins, you can add these to the stock pot to give the stock a deeper flavour.

**You can roll them into balls if you find it easier but I think it looks nicer if you cut them out.




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