Sourdough Pumpkin Bread (Vegan)

Having recently revived my sourdough starter, my collection of sourdough discard has started up again. Since it’s the spooky season (a.k.a October), it only felt appropriate to make a vegan pumpkin bread version of my sourdough banana bread!! Using homemade pumpkin puree I had planned on doing this a few weeks ago but found I there was NO CANNED PUMPKIN PUREE in stock anywhere near me & ordering it online would’ve cost £3 a tin! Who’s buying up all the canned pumpkin!? Anywho, I’m no stranger to making my own purees so I went ahead and bought a cooking pumpkin, cut it in half & roasted for an hour then scooped the flesh out & blended it up to make some puree. However I found that this homemade puree was much more watery than the canned puree so the loaf turned out gummy and crumbly. An intense few weeks of shoots got in the way but this week I got round to retesting it with homemade pumpkin puree which I strained in a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a bowl for 3 hours. I also gathered up the edges of the cheesecloth after this time and gently squeezed until no more […]

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sourdough pumpkin bread sliced with a cup of tea

Having recently revived my sourdough starter, my collection of sourdough discard has started up again. Since it’s the spooky season (a.k.a October), it only felt appropriate to make a vegan pumpkin bread version of my sourdough banana bread!!

a loaf of vegan sourdough pumpkin bread with tea being poured and winter squash

Using homemade pumpkin puree

I had planned on doing this a few weeks ago but found I there was NO CANNED PUMPKIN PUREE in stock anywhere near me & ordering it online would’ve cost £3 a tin! Who’s buying up all the canned pumpkin!? Anywho, I’m no stranger to making my own purees so I went ahead and bought a cooking pumpkin, cut it in half & roasted for an hour then scooped the flesh out & blended it up to make some puree. However I found that this homemade puree was much more watery than the canned puree so the loaf turned out gummy and crumbly.

An intense few weeks of shoots got in the way but this week I got round to retesting it with homemade pumpkin puree which I strained in a cheesecloth-lined strainer set over a bowl for 3 hours. I also gathered up the edges of the cheesecloth after this time and gently squeezed until no more water was coming out. This resulted in a texture which was much more like the canned pumpkin puree I buy. I tried it in a loaf and it worked a treat!!

a sliced sourdough pumpkin loaf on a plate with a cup of tea

Luckily, I’d had a conversation with someone on my IG DMs about converting my banana bread into a a pumpkin bread (shout out to Kelsey!!). She actually tested the recipe too – telling me her changes of increasing the sugar slightly & lowering the pumpkin slightly – and declared it a success 🙂 I’ve made it both with 150g sugar and 200g sugar and they both work out so it’s up to you and your preferred level of sweetness.

As well as these changes, I made a custom pumpkin spice blend for the cake with cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves & ginger for that Autumnal flavour. As I had some oranges to hand, I grated in some zest too as I always find it helps to round out the spices in things like carrot cakes & pumpkin breads. This is such a delicious, soft loaf and is VERY moreish. Perfect for a cuppa as an afternoon snack!

Other sourdough discard recipes

Sourdough Pumpkin Bread (Vegan)

Sourdough Pumpkin Bread (Vegan)

Yield: 1 loaf (serves 12)

A warmly spiced vegan pumpkin bread which uses sourdough discard!

Ingredients

  • 200g (3/4 cup plus 1 tbsp) pumpkin puree* (SEE NOTES if using homemade)
  • 150g (3/4 cup) to 200g (1 cup) light brown sugar*
  • 90g (1/3 cup + 2 tsp) neutral oil or light olive oil
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • zest of 1 orange, finely grated
  • 1/4 tsp fine table salt
  • 150g (3/4 cup) sourdough starter/discard (100% hydration)
  • 120g (1 cup) plain white (all-purpose) flour
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda (baking soda)

Topping (optional):

  • 2 tbsp light brown sugar
  • 3 tbsp pumpkin seeds/pepitas

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C fan (350°F). Grease a 2lb loaf tin with some oil and line with a sling of baking paper.
  2. In a large bowl, mix the pumpkin puree, sugar, oil, spices, orange zest and salt until smooth. Stir in the sourdough starter. Lastly, add the flour and bicarbonate of soda. Fold together until just combined.
  3. Pour the batter into your lined loaf tin. Sprinkle with the topping of light brown sugar and pumpkin seeds, if using.
  4. Bake for 55-70 minutes - a toothpick inserted into the centre should come out clean. If the loaf looks like it's browning too much but is not cooked through yet, tent the top with foil for the last 20 minutes of baking.
  5. Allow to cool before removing from the tin, slicing & serving.

Notes

Adapted from my Sourdough Banana Bread (vegan)

Amount of sugar: use 150g for a slightly less sweet loaf or 200g if you prefer things sweeter

If using homemade pumpkin puree: it is essential that your pumpkin puree is drained before weighing & using in this recipe. To do this, line a sieve (mesh strainer) set over a bowl with 2 layers of cheesecloth. Fill with your homemade pumpkin puree and leave to drain for 2-3 hours. After this time, gather up the edges of the cheesecloth and twist together at the top. Gently squeeze the bundle of puree to remove any last bit of water - don't squeeze too hard or the puree may start to seep through the cheesecloth! The texture should be very thick just like canned pumpkin puree. You can now measure it out and use it in the recipe.

To make homemade pumpkin puree: cut your pumpkin in half. Place cut side down on a baking tray and roast at 180C fan (350F) for 1-2 hours until completely soft. Remove from the oven, flip over and scoop out the seeds then discard them. Scoop the flesh into a blender/food processor/bowl with sitck blender, discard the skin. Blitz the flesh until smooth then drain as instructed above.

What is 100% hydration sourdough starter? This means that when feeding your starter, you're using an equal weight of flour & water (e.g. feeding it with 50g flour & 50g water each time).

Non-Vegan option: use 100g butter, melted, in place of the oil.

Have you made this recipe?
I’d love to see how it went! Tag me on instagram @izyhossack and hashtag it #topwithcinnamon so I can have a look & reshare in my stories!

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30-Minute Plant-Based Recipes Ebook

This 30-recipe ebook features all plant-based (i.e. vegan) recipes, from Lunch and Dinner through to Snacks and Bakes. Each recipe only takes 30 minutes (or less) from start to finish, to make your weeknight cooking less daunting! Delivered straight to your inbox as a downloadable PDF, with images for every recipe. It’s going to be 60% off until February so get it now to take advantage of the discount. Overview of the contents Only £1.99 for all of January 2020 (going up to £4.99 thereafter) All the recipes are given in grams and cups (or ounces where appropriate) with degrees C/F as well. Thirty vegan recipes which you can make in 30 minutes or less. All the recipes will serve from 1 to 4 people, making them perfect for weeknight cooking and smaller batches Easily accessible ingredients An image to accompany each recipe Top tips for speedy cooking PDF format with over 70 pages Lunch – 9 savoury recipes which are perfect for leftovers (so great for lunchboxes) or lighter dinners. Recipes include a carrot, coconut & lemongrass soup, salt & pepper tofu noodles and kale, pecan, pear & cranberry salad. Dinner – 10 savoury recipes which are hearty and warming. Recipes include butternut squash spaghetti with crispy sage, hoisin pulled […]

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This 30-recipe ebook features all plant-based (i.e. vegan) recipes, from Lunch and Dinner through to Snacks and Bakes. Each recipe only takes 30 minutes (or less) from start to finish, to make your weeknight cooking less daunting!

Delivered straight to your inbox as a downloadable PDF, with images for every recipe. It’s going to be 60% off until February so get it now to take advantage of the discount.

Overview of the contents

  • Only £1.99 for all of January 2020 (going up to £4.99 thereafter)
  • All the recipes are given in grams and cups (or ounces where appropriate) with degrees C/F as well.
  • Thirty vegan recipes which you can make in 30 minutes or less.
  • All the recipes will serve from 1 to 4 people, making them perfect for weeknight cooking and smaller batches
  • Easily accessible ingredients
  • An image to accompany each recipe
  • Top tips for speedy cooking
  • PDF format with over 70 pages

  • Lunch – 9 savoury recipes which are perfect for leftovers (so great for lunchboxes) or lighter dinners.
    • Recipes include a carrot, coconut & lemongrass soup, salt & pepper tofu noodles and kale, pecan, pear & cranberry salad.
  • Dinner – 10 savoury recipes which are hearty and warming.
    • Recipes include butternut squash spaghetti with crispy sage, hoisin pulled mushroom pancakes and frying pan lasagne.
  • Snacks + Bakes – 11 sweet & savoury recipes for dessert, snacks and bridging the gap between meals.
    • Recipes include mini chocolate chip cookies, a brownie for one and, a crowd-favourite, ‘chorizo’ dip.

Supporting The Trussell Trust Charity

From every sale, 99p will go to The Trussell Trust, a charity dedicated to ending hunger in the UK. They have a network of food banks to help those facing poverty.

Thanks for all your support! I hope you enjoy the recipes and that they brighten up your Winter cooking a bit. Tag me on instagram (@izyhossack) if you make anything so I can see your pics & re-share 🙂 

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Butternut Squash & Caramelised Shallot Tart

Every year I try to come up with some plant-based alternatives to Turkey. Most of the time I’m drawn to winter squash for their versatility and beauty. This year for my veggie Christmas main (which was also for Thanksgiving), I made a savoury butternut squash tart in a walnut-oat crust. I topped it off with balsamic-caramelised shallots and some baby kale. It was an utter delight!! The filling is slightly creamy and sweet and you get the savoury flavour from the crust and shallots. It pairs VERY well with a bit of gravy (I make mine with veg stock, brown onions, lots of marmite and MSG) which I think is a *must* when it comes to a Holiday main. I use chickpea flour with water to set the filling but, if you’re not vegan/making it for vegans, an egg can be used instead. If you’re not feeling up for making a tart crust (understandable when theres 10000 other things to make for Christmas lunch), you can always buy chilled shortcrust pastry from the supermarket and use that instead as it’s usually vegan-friendly. Serving size/serving more people This recipe makes one smallish tart, enough for 4 people as a main with […]

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Overhead image of sliced squash tart with shallots and kale

Every year I try to come up with some plant-based alternatives to Turkey. Most of the time I’m drawn to winter squash for their versatility and beauty. This year for my veggie Christmas main (which was also for Thanksgiving), I made a savoury butternut squash tart in a walnut-oat crust. I topped it off with balsamic-caramelised shallots and some baby kale. It was an utter delight!!

A squash tart with bowls of caramelised shallots and baby kale

The filling is slightly creamy and sweet and you get the savoury flavour from the crust and shallots. It pairs VERY well with a bit of gravy (I make mine with veg stock, brown onions, lots of marmite and MSG) which I think is a *must* when it comes to a Holiday main. I use chickpea flour with water to set the filling but, if you’re not vegan/making it for vegans, an egg can be used instead.

If you’re not feeling up for making a tart crust (understandable when theres 10000 other things to make for Christmas lunch), you can always buy chilled shortcrust pastry from the supermarket and use that instead as it’s usually vegan-friendly.

Serving size/serving more people

This recipe makes one smallish tart, enough for 4 people as a main with sides. You could even cut it into 8 pieces to have as a starter! If you’re cooking for more people, the recipe doubles very well and can be made as one large tart in a 28cm (11-inch) loose-based tart tin.

A sliced savoury squash tart with caramelised shallots with a slice removed on a side plate

To make ahead of time

To make this ahead of time you can prep the tart crust, filling and shallots the day before serving and leave them all separate. You can keep the crust out at room temperature but chill the filling & shallots. About 30 minutes before you’re about to serve, stir the filling up (as it may have thickened), spread it into the crust, and bake the tart as instructed in the recipe. Finally, warm up the shallots in their pan on the stove or in the oven (covered with a lid, for around 5 minutes) and top the tart with the warm shallots & a handful of leaves.

Butternut Squash & Caramelised Shallot Tart

Butternut Squash & Caramelised Shallot Tart

Yield: serves 4
Prep Time: 1 hour
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

Tart filling:

  • 500g (1 lb) butternut squash, peeled, seeds removed
  • 4 tbsp (1/4 cup) extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 large or 5 small garlic cloves, peeled, crushed
  • 2 tbsp tahini
  • 1 tsp chilli crisp (optional)*
  • 3 tbsp chickpea flour (see notes)
  • 3 tbsp water
  • zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • Salt, to taste

Tart crust:

  • 60g (1/2 cup) walnuts
  • 45g (1/2 cup) rolled oats
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp fine salt
  • 1/2 tsp fennel seeds
  • 120g (1 cup) plain white (all-purpose) flour
  • 3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 to 4 tbsp non-dairy milk or water

Shallots:

  • 200g (7 ounces) shallots, halved, peeled
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • handful of salad leaves, to serve (optional)

Instructions

Cook the squash:

  1. Cut the butternut squash into roughly 2 inch (5cm) chunks. Heat the olive oil in a large pot (I use a dutch oven here) on the stove over a medium heat. Once hot, add the squash and a pinch of salt and stir to coat. Cover with a lid and lower the heat to medium-low. Leave to cook, stirring occasionally, until the chunks and soft and starting to break down (about 15 minutes). Remove from the heat and set aside.


Make the crust:

  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C fan (350°F).
  2. Place the walnuts and oats in a food processor and blitz until you get a scruffy mealy texture. Add the baking powder, salt, fennel seeds and flour to the food processor and pulse to combine. Add the olive oil and 2 tbsp of the non-dairy milk and pulse together until you get a cohesive dough. You may need to add more milk to get it to come together.
  3. Crumble the dough into the base of a 23-cm (9-inch) springform cake tin (or a loose-based tart tin) and use your fingertips to press it down into an even layer over the base and up the sides of the tin (in a springform tin it should come up about 3cm high). Reserve a little bit of the dough for patching up cracks later on. Prick the crust all over with a fork.
  4. Place the cake tin/tart tin on a baking sheet and then into the oven. Bake for 10-15 minutes until it looks dry. Remove from the oven and use the reserved pastry to patch up any cracks that may have formed. Set the crust aside.

Make the filling:

  1. Blend the cooked squash until smooth - you can either do this straight in the pot using an immersion blender (hand blender/stick blender) or by transferring it to a food processor/blender and blitzing, then transferring to a mixing bowl.
  2. Add the remaining filling ingredients and stir together. Taste and season with salt as needed.
  3. Pour the filling into the pre-baked crust. Bake for 15-20 minutes until the top looks set and dry.

Cook the shallots:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a heavy, oven-proof frying pan/skillet over a medium heat. Sprinkle over the sugar in an even layer and then lay the shallots cut side-down over the sugar.
  2. Lower the heat to medium-low and leave to cook until you get a nice brown crust underneath (about 5 minutes). Flip each half over and allow to cook until the other side is browned (about 5 minutes again).
  3. Sprinkle with a pinch of salt and then pour in the balsamic vinegar. Cover with a lid or a piece of foil and transfer to the oven - roast for 15-20 minutes until the shallots are soft all the way through. Remove from the oven and uncover.

Finish the tart:

  1. Top the cooked tart with some leafy greens (I used baby kale) and the caramelised shallots. Serve warm.

Notes

  • *I use the Lao Gan Ma 'crispy chilli in oil' which is BANGING!! Get yourself some from your local East Asian food shop, or online.
  • If you're not vegan, you can use 1 egg instead of the 3 tbsp chickpea flour + 3 tbsp water in the filling.
  • Tart crust adapted from Amy Chaplin
  • This recipe makes one smallish tart, enough for 4 people as a main with sides. You could even cut it into 8 pieces to have as a starter though. If you're cooking for more people, the recipe doubles very well and can be made as one large tart in a 28cm (11-inch) loose-based tart tin.

Have you made this recipe?
I’d love to see how it went! Tag me on instagram @izyhossack and hashtag it #topwithcinnamon so I can have a look & reshare in my stories!

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Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts & Smoky Olives

Come Christmas or Thanksgiving, these crisp, golden Brussels sprouts will always be a favourite. My mum used to make sauteed brussels sprouts with chestnuts, juniper and bacon when I was growing up. The pairing of sprouts and chestnuts is so classic and for good reason – the sweet, creamy chestnuts match perfectly with the earthy sprouts. I pan roast my sprouts here so they get golden and caramelised but still have bite to them (NO soggy sprouts allowed!!!). Instead of bacon, I opted for a salty olive to offset the sweetness, cooked in a smoky, spicy chipotle paste for that almost meaty flavour. I do love a Nocellara olive for their sweet, buttery flavour but you can also use a more bitter, black olive (like I’ve done here with Moroccan dried olives) or even capers if that’s your jam.

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Close up of pan roasted Brussels Sprouts with chestnuts and smoky olives

Come Christmas or Thanksgiving, these crisp, golden Brussels sprouts will always be a favourite.

My mum used to make sauteed brussels sprouts with chestnuts, juniper and bacon when I was growing up. The pairing of sprouts and chestnuts is so classic and for good reason – the sweet, creamy chestnuts match perfectly with the earthy sprouts.

A bowl of roasted Brussels Sprouts with chestnuts and smoky olives on a table

I pan roast my sprouts here so they get golden and caramelised but still have bite to them (NO soggy sprouts allowed!!!). Instead of bacon, I opted for a salty olive to offset the sweetness, cooked in a smoky, spicy chipotle paste for that almost meaty flavour. I do love a Nocellara olive for their sweet, buttery flavour but you can also use a more bitter, black olive (like I’ve done here with Moroccan dried olives) or even capers if that’s your jam.

Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts & Smoky Olives

Pan Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts & Smoky Olives

Yield: serves 4 to 6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes

Ingredients

  • 500g (1lb 2 ounces) Brussels sprouts
  • 2 tbsp refined olive oil
  • salt
  • 100g (heaped 1/2 cup) cooked, peeled chestnuts
  • 50g (heaped 1/4 cup) your favourite olives, pits removed, roughly torn (see notes)
  • 1 tsp chipotle chilli paste (I use Gran Luchito) (see notes)

Instructions

  1. Trim the bases off the Brussels sprouts and cut them in half. Remove any gross outer leaves.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp of the olive oil in a large frying pan (I like to use cast iron here) over a medium-low heat. Add the Brussels sprouts in a single layer, cut side down - you'll probably need to do cook them in two batches. Let them sit, undisturbed, until golden underneath (about 5 minutes). Flip and let cook until tender (roughly a further 5 minutes). If they still seem too crisp, cover with a lid and let cook on low for another 1-2 minutes to soften. Tip into the serving dish.
  3. Return the pan to the heat, add the remaining olive oil and cook the rest of the sprouts, as before adding them to the serving dish too.
  4. Return the pan to the heat and add the cooked chestnuts. Cook on high for a minute or so just to warm through, then scatter over the sprouts in the serving dish.
  5. Return the pan to the heat. Add the torn olives and the chipotle paste and cook, stirring constantly, until coated and hot. Scatter over the sprouts in the serving dish and serve.

Notes

- For the olives, I really like Nocellara olives as they are juicy, sweet & buttery. If you prefer something deeper, try using 'dried' olives - they usually come in a jar without brine/oil and look slightly wrinkled. They have a more bitter flavour and chewier texture to them.

- An alternative to the chilli paste is 1 tsp smoked paprika.

Have you made this recipe?
I’d love to see how it went! Tag me on instagram @izyhossack and hashtag it #topwithcinnamon so I can have a look & reshare in my stories!

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Simple Garlicky Vegan Sourdough Stuffing

Stuffing is always a popular Thanksgiving side dish, isn’t it? Basically just crispy pieces of bread intertwined with chunks of delicious veg. Almost like a warm panzanella! This vegan version is just as good – I cook down leeks and garlic until soft and sweet to fold into the crusty sourdough chunks. Then the whole thing is covered with herby broth and dotted with salty soy-coated mushrooms for those who you know might miss the meat! Other than that it’s a simple affair as that helps it pair really well with all the other side dishes you have at a roast (and definitely goes well with gravy!). The most extravagant part really is the decent amount of garlic I add whiiiich basically makes it into a big ol tray of garlic bread. Other vegan Thanksgiving recipes Vegan Pecan Pie Vegan Cauliflower Cheese Gratin Brussels Sprouts with Chestnuts & Smoky Olives Hassleback Squash with Garlic-Sage Butter

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A close up of a dish of vegan sourdough stuffing with leeks and soy-sauce mushrooms

Stuffing is always a popular Thanksgiving side dish, isn’t it? Basically just crispy pieces of bread intertwined with chunks of delicious veg. Almost like a warm panzanella!

A dish of sourdough vegan stuffing on a table

This vegan version is just as good – I cook down leeks and garlic until soft and sweet to fold into the crusty sourdough chunks. Then the whole thing is covered with herby broth and dotted with salty soy-coated mushrooms for those who you know might miss the meat! Other than that it’s a simple affair as that helps it pair really well with all the other side dishes you have at a roast (and definitely goes well with gravy!). The most extravagant part really is the decent amount of garlic I add whiiiich basically makes it into a big ol tray of garlic bread.

Other vegan Thanksgiving recipes

Simple Vegan Garlicky Sourdough Stuffing

Simple Vegan Garlicky Sourdough Stuffing

Yield: serves 4
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 55 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 tbsp olive oil, divided (plus extra for greasing + drizzling)
  • 1 large leek, cleaned, sliced into 1 cm (1/2 inch) coins
  • 5 large (or 7-10 medium/small) cloves garlic, finely minced
  • 200g (7 ounces) shiitake or chestnut mushrooms, roughly chopped
  • 1/4 tsp ground white pepper
  • 1 tbsp dark soy sauce or tamari
  • 250ml (1 cup) hot vegetable stock/broth
  • 1 sprig rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
  • 3 sprigs thyme, leaves picked
  • 7 cups (300g) sourdough bread, cut into 3cm (1 inch) cubes

Instructions

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C (400F) and grease a medium roasting dish (around 1.5 litre capacity) with a bit of extra olive oil.
  2. Heat 1 tbsp of the olive oil in a large frying pan over a medium heat. Add the coins of sliced leek and season with a pinch of salt. Stir to coat with oil and turn the heat to low. Leave to cook for 5-10 minutes, stirring every now and then, until soft. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 more minute. Tip the cooked leeks and garlic into a large bowl.
  3. Place the frying pan back on the heat and add the mushrooms to the pan with a pinch of salt. Allow to cook, stirring often, until most of the water has been drawn out and evaporated from the mushrooms. Once you see them start to brown, add the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, the white pepper and soy sauce and let cook until reduced and dry. Set aside to cool.
  4. To the bowl of leeks add the vegetable broth, rosemary, thyme and bread cubes. Stir to allow the bread to soak up the liquid. Tip into the prepared roasting dish. Dot with spoonfuls of the soy sauce mushrooms. Drizzle with a bit of extra olive oil.
  5. Bake for 25-35 minutes until the top is crisp and starting to brown. Serve hot.

Notes

To make ahead:

Prepare up until just before you bake it. Cover the dish (I just use a baking sheet to cover it) and place in the fridge for up to 2 days. Uncover and bake straight from the fridge, no need to bring to room temperature.

Have you made this recipe?
I’d love to see how it went! Tag me on instagram @izyhossack and hashtag it #topwithcinnamon so I can have a look & reshare in my stories!

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Vegan Cauliflower Cheese Gratin

This creamy, vegan ‘cheese’ sauce is the perfect base for steamed cauliflower and broccoli to reinvent the British classic Cauliflower Cheese. A crispy topping of breadcrumbs makes it even better!! The sauce is based off of one by Kenji at Serious Eats – I changed it to suit my tastes and I’ve used it multiple times now to make vegan mac and cheese. I think the addition of a few key things really helps. Firstly, the potato helps give the sauce a thickness and stretchiness that you can’t get from a flour-based roux. It’s the blending action on the potato that really makes this work. Secondly, adding a bit blob of something salty & savoury – my favourite is marmite and I have to say, I haven’t even been the biggest fan of marmite in the past. This sauce has changed my mind. Lastly, a bit of acidity & sweetness from the mustard (I use the French’s yellow mustard as it’s quite neutral but sweet) and apple cider vinegar. All of that together helps to create that faux cheesy effect and without having to resort to using pre-made vegan cheese (most of which smells kinda weird). Anyway, I used this […]

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A tray of vegan cauliflower cheese gratin with a pair of hands holding it

This creamy, vegan ‘cheese’ sauce is the perfect base for steamed cauliflower and broccoli to reinvent the British classic Cauliflower Cheese. A crispy topping of breadcrumbs makes it even better!!

The sauce is based off of one by Kenji at Serious Eats – I changed it to suit my tastes and I’ve used it multiple times now to make vegan mac and cheese. I think the addition of a few key things really helps. Firstly, the potato helps give the sauce a thickness and stretchiness that you can’t get from a flour-based roux. It’s the blending action on the potato that really makes this work. Secondly, adding a bit blob of something salty & savoury – my favourite is marmite and I have to say, I haven’t even been the biggest fan of marmite in the past. This sauce has changed my mind. Lastly, a bit of acidity & sweetness from the mustard (I use the French’s yellow mustard as it’s quite neutral but sweet) and apple cider vinegar. All of that together helps to create that faux cheesy effect and without having to resort to using pre-made vegan cheese (most of which smells kinda weird).

Anyway, I used this for a vegan Christmas dinner I did last year for my friends and it went down super well with everyone! I added the breadcrumbs for a crispy top but if you’re coeliac, just leave them off or use GF ones instead!

Other vegan Thanksgiving recipes:

Vegan Cauliflower Cheese Gratin

Vegan Cauliflower Cheese Gratin

Yield: serves 4
Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes

A super creamy & tangy vegan 'cheddar cheese' sauce coating steamed cauliflower and tenderstem broccoli, with a crispy breadcrumb topping.

Ingredients

For the vegan 'cheese' sauce:

  • 60ml (1/4 cup) extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 white onion, finely sliced
  • 120g (~3/4 cup) peeled, cubed potato
  • 130g (1 cup) cashews
  • 375g (1 1/2 cups) water
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp garlic granules
  • 3 tbsp nutritional yeast
  • 1 tbsp marmite, soy sauce or miso (my fave is marmite)
  • 1 tbsp yellow mustard
  • 2 tsp apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Black pepper

For the gratin:

  • 1 medium head cauliflower, cut into medium florets
  • 150g (5.4 ounces) tenderstem broccoli (optional)
  • 3 tbsp breadcrumbs
  • 1/2 tbsp olive oil

Instructions

    For the 'cheese' sauce:

    1. Heat 4 tbsp of the olive oil in a large pot over a
      medium-low heat. Add the onion to the pot and saute until it starts to brown
      slightly – about 10 minutes. Add the potato, cashews, water, smoked paprika,
      garlic granules, nutritional yeast, soy sauce/miso, and mustard to the pot.
    2. Bring to the boil and turn down to simmer – leave for 15
      minutes so that the potatoes and cashews can soften.
    3. Pour the contents of the pot into the jug of a high-speed
      blender along with the apple cider vinegar and blitz until completely smooth,
      adding more water as needed to get the right sauce texture (I added about 250ml/1 cup to get it thin enough). Taste and season
      with salt and black pepper.


    For the gratin:

    1. Preheat your oven grill to a medium heat and place an oven rack in the top third of the oven.
    2. Pour a few cm (1-2 inch) depth of water into a large pot and set over a high heat on the stove. Once the water is boiling, add the cauliflower and broccoli to the pot. Cover with a lid, turn down the heat to low, and let the veg steam for 4 minutes until tender but still with firmness to it.
    3. Drain the veg and add to a roasting dish. Pour over the 'cheese' sauce and stir to coat. Mix the breadcrumbs and oil in a small bowl until coated then scatter this over the vegetables.
    4. Place under the grill in the oven and watch carefully. You want the breadcrumbs to toast and the sauce to brown slightly. This should take around 5 minutes but will depend on your grill.
    5. Once finished, remove from the oven and allow to cool slightly before serving.





Notes

To make ahead:

  1. Prep the sauce and store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  2. Prep the veg and, once steamed, store in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 3 days.
  3. When ready to assemble: Gently warm the sauce with an added splash of water, in a small pot on the stove, stirring often until hot. Toss with the cold vegetables in a roasting dish and continue with the recipe as usual.


To make gluten free:

Use gluten free breadcrumbs for the topping

Have you made this recipe?
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