Chestnut Paté en Crôute


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A deceptively simple recipe that makes an impressive centrepiece, as well as tasting very good. Serve with a rich gravy, roasties and whatever vegetables you like.Thanks again to Rose Elliot, the Goddess of Veggie food, for the lovely recipe!

Serves 4 – makes 1 plait. Or double the recipe, cook both and freeze one for another time.
30 minutes preparation - or less. 30 minutes baking.
No nuts
No sesame
Reduced sugar

2 onions, chopped
1 piece of celery, finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
2 garlic cloves, crushed
100g/3½oz button mushrooms, sliced
Half a tin of unsweetened chestnut purée (a full tin is 435g so you want just over 200g) OR the equivalent of whole cooked chestnuts, mashed up (the ready-cooked vacuum-packed variety are widely available). You can also combine puree and chopped whole chestnuts for a mixed texture. Merchant Gourmet brand is good and widely available and sells both
1-2 tbsp shoyu/tamari soya sauce or 1 tbsp dark miso
1/2 tsp allspice or 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
1 tbsp brandy
½ oz fresh soft breadcrumbs – wholemeal or white
 Salt and lots of freshly-ground black pepper
1 sheet of Jus Rol ready-rolled puff pastry (rectangular, not round)
Soya milk to glaze


1. Preheat the oven to 230°C/450°/Gas Mark 8.

2. Fry the onions and celery in the oil in a large saucepan, covered, for 10 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms, cook for 2-3 minutes.

3. Mix in the chestnut purée, soya sauce/miso, breadcrumbs, brandy and seasoning until everything is well amalgamated.

4. Unroll the pastry from the packet and place carefully on a lightly-oiled baking sheet. Pile the chestnut mixture lengthways down the middle third of the pastry.

5. Make diagonal cuts 1cm/½ inch apart on the pastry on either side of the chestnut mixture. Fold these up alternately to make a lattice covering it - see the photograph!

6. Trim the ends – you could make leaves from these left-over pieces and stick on top with water. Brush the pastry with soya milk.

7. Bake for 5 minutes, then reduce the oven to 200°C/400°F/Gas Mark 6 and bake for a further 20-25 minutes.

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Day before?


Can I make the filling the day before then assemble and bake the next day?

Absolutely - yes, it will

Absolutely - yes, it will crisp up nicely in a hot oven (cover with foil if the pastry starts to get over-browned!) Alternatively, you could make the filling the day before then do the plait thing and baking on the day.