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Crumble - Main Course Vegetarian

An excellent crumble for those seeking a meat & fish-free main course. While many of the vegetables are of the winter variety, you should have no trouble finding them throughout the year at upmarket greengrocers and supermarkets. Don't be tempted to leave out the prunes, as they add real interest, and lift the dish above the ordinary.

The dish can be vegan, if you replace the butter with extra oil. Prunes you cook yourself will be better, but if you are short of time, and rather than not use them, they can be replaced by tinned prunes.

Key Features

  • Suitable for Vegetarians
  • Suitable for Vegans

Ingredients

For 4 generous helpings:

120gr/4 oz Cooked Prunes (soak these overnight in boiling water, then cook in new water until tender)

2 medium Onions, peeled and thinly-sliced

2 medium cloves Garlic, peeled and finely-chopped

30gr/1 oz Butter

1 tablespoon (15ml) Vegetable Oil

180gr/6 oz each of the following - Carrots, Swedes & Turnips; peeled and sliced into pieces of about 1cm/½ in

1 Leek, the dark green section discarded, the remainder washed and sliced into 2.5cm/1 in rings

2 firm Courgettes, headed & tailed, then cut into 2.5cm/1 in rings

120gr/4 oz Mushrooms - use either flats (quartered) or chestnut mushrooms (quartered)

2 tablespoons (30ml) Flour

300ml/½ pint Vegetable Stock (perhaps made up with Marigold Powder)

1 tablespoon (15ml) Tomato Purée

For the Crumble:

120gr/4 oz Rolled Oats

120gr/4 oz Chopped Hazelnuts

½ teaspoon Dried Tarragon or 2 teaspoons chopped fresh Tarragon

150gr/5 oz Butter

Equipment needed: A wide and deep Frying Pan. An ovenproof Lasagne/Shepherds Pie-type Baking Dish.

Method

1. Stone the prunes, if they are not already pitted, then cut them in half.

2. Melt the butter with the vegetable oil in a deep frying pan over a gentle heat, then fry the onions until they are translucent - about 5 minutes.

3. Add the sliced carrots, leeks, swede, turnips and garlic; increase the heat to medium and fry for a further 5 minutes, turning them occasionally.

4. Add the courgette, prune and mushroom pieces and mix well in.

5. Sprinkle of the flour, mix again, then slowly add the vegetable stock, stirring constantly as you do so.

6. Mix in the tomato purée and allow to bubble for about 3 minutes.

7. Transfer this to your chosen baking dish.

8. Make the crumble topping by mixing together the oats, chopped nuts, tarragon and butter with your finger tips - until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

9. Sprinkle this mixture over the vegetables and bake in the oven for 30 minutes, or until the topping is golden and crisp.

Serve.

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