Savory Nut Loaf

  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 leek, chopped
  • 2 celery ribs, finely chopped
  • 8 ounces of mushrooms, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 14 oz can of lentils, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup mixed nuts, such as hazelnuts, cashews and almonds, finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 aged Cheddar cheese, grated
  • 1 medium egg, beaten
  • 3 to 4 tbsp fresh mixed herbs, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • chives and sprigs of flat-leaf parsley, to garnish

Preheat the oven to 375F. Lightly grease the sides and bottom of a 9x3x5 inch loaf pan and line with waxed paper. Heat the oil in a large saucepan; add the chopped onion, leeks, celery ribs, mushrooms, and the crushed garlic.

Cook gently for about 10 minutes, until the vegetables have softened, stirring occasionally. Add the lentils, mixed nuts, flour, grated cheese, and herbs. Season the ingredients with salt and pepper, and mix thoroughly.

Spoon the nut, vegetable and lentil mixture into the prepared loaf pan, making sure that it is pressed into the corners, and level the surface. Bake, uncovered, for 40 to 60 minutes, or until the nut loaf is lightly browned on top and firm to the touch. Cool the loaf slightly in the pan, then turn out onto a serving plate. Serve the loaf hot or cold, cut into slices and garnished with cloves and flat-leaf parsley.

  • Yields: Serves 4
  • Preparation Time: About an hour and a half