Roast autumn vegetables – carrots, butternut squash, pumpkin and onions – make a healthy and delicious vegan main course, or a lovely side dish. Cooked in a drier heat rather than in simmering stock, you end up with scorched wedges of pumpkin. Serve them with this warm walnut sauce.
Prep time: 10 minutes | Cooking time: 40 minutes
Four as a main course, more as a side dish
- 10 slim carrots (the ones you buy in a bunch), a mixture of colours if possible
- 500g celeriac
- 500g butternut squash or pumpkin, cut into thick wedges and deseeded
- 3 large white or red onions, cut into wedges
- 4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 3 heads endive, red or white (or a mixture)
For the sauce:
- 55g walnut pieces
- 200ml extra-virgin olive oil (a fruity rather than a grassy one)
- 75g red miso paste
- 1⁄2 tsp chilli flakes
- 3 fat garlic cloves, grated to a purée
- Preheat the oven to 200C/190C fan*/Gas 6.
- Trim the carrots. Leave the green tufts if there are any but wash them well. If you haven’t been able to get slim carrots then halve larger ones along their length.
- Peel the celeriac and cut it into big wedges. Put all the vegetables – except the endive – into a couple of roasting tins (or baking trays that have a lip all the way around) where they can lie in a single layer. Add the oil, season (not too much salt as the sauce is salty) and toss everything around with your hands.
- Roast for 40 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender and slightly scorched, turning them once. Quarter the endive heads and add halfway through the cooking time, coating them in the oil.
- While the vegetables are roasting make the sauce. Pound the walnuts in a mortar and pestle – or blitz in a food processor using the pulse button – until you have a mixture that is part finely ground and part chunky pieces. Put the olive oil in a saucepan and set over a very gentle heat. Add the miso and whisk it together – rather than breaking down completely it will stay in little globules separate from the oil, but that’s fine. Add the chilli and garlic and simmer very gently for about 5 minutes, stirring every so often. The garlic must not colour. Stir in the walnuts and cook for another 2 minutes.
- Transfer the vegetables to a large platter. Either spoon the sauce over or serve it on the side.
*Diana’s conversion may differ from the standard