A Very Merry Vegan Christmas
December 18, 2013
By Raine Dinale
A Very Merry Vegan Christmas
Christmas comes to people all over the world in many various forms. The foundation of a traditional Christmas dinner is usually made up of turkey, chicken or ham, or in the hotter climates, seafood and cold meats.

If you happen to be a person who chooses a Vegan diet it is just as important for your Christmas dinner to be a celebration and time for the family to share a wonderful meal. This can be achieved with a little imagination and fortitude.

Here is a wonderful main course to be eaten with baked vegetables and steamed greens of your choice, followed by an easy, natural fruit dessert.

Vegetable Walnut Bake

Ingredients:
  • 2 cups crushed walnuts (with mortar and pestle)
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 2 cups mashed tofu
  • 2 cups grated sweet potato
  • 1 bunch asparagus, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons of Miso (dark or light)
  • 1/3 cup soy sauce
  • 1 cup water
  • Mixed herbs, fresh or dry

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Mix the walnuts, onion, breadcrumbs, tofu, sweet potato and asparagus in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the miso, soy sauce and water into a paste and then add the paste to the main ingredients. Stir in the herbs.

Line a medium sized baking dish or casserole dish with a little olive oil (to prevent sticking) and put the mixture into the dish. Bake for 45-60 minutes at 200°C. Serves 4.

Miso & Mushroom Gravy

Ingredients:
  • 1 tablespoon of Miso
  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • Water to taste (keep adding water if too salty)
  • 1/3 onion, chopped in half rings
  • Olive oil to taste
  • 1 large mushroom, chopped
  • 1 ½ tablespoons wholemeal flour
  • Water

Directions:
Sauté the onions in the olive oil, add the chopped mushrooms and cook until the onions are golden.

Add the miso and soy sauce to the mix and then add water to taste – make sure the water takes the salty taste away. Cook until all flavours are blended

Make a thickening paste with the flour and water. Add the thickened paste to the gravy.

Pour the gravy over the Vegetable Walnut Loaf.

Serve the Vegetable Walnut Loaf and Miso Mushroom Gravy with wonderful baked vegetables. Increase the amount of ingredients if you want a bit of extra gravy for the baked vegies.

For dessert, try our fabulous vegan Poached Pears. You can find the full recipe here.

Poached Pears

Ingredients:
  • 4 ripe generous sized pears
  • 3 cups grape juice
  • 2 cups of port

Directions:
Peel the pears, leaving the storks on.

Pour grape juice and port into a casserole dish or baking dish with a lid.

Place the pears in the dish – the liquid should ¾ cover them. Put the lid on.

Bake the pears in a 180°C moderate oven for approximately 3 hours.

Every hour change the position of the pears (lie them down on each side). The port and grape juice should grow thicker and evaporate.

Serve with a decorative mistletoe attached to the stork and some vegan ice cream. Serves 4.

Raine Dinale has worked as a published freelance writer for more than 20 years in both Australia and New Zealand. She established copywriting company woRDspin, and presently acts as Editor/Senior Writer for a new magazine called 'Secrets to Health on the Mornington Peninsula'. Raine is also a working actor who has recently settled in Mornington. She has three beautiful daughters and a Spoodle named Harry. You can contact Raine through her Facebook page or LinkedIn.

"Just because you're vegan doesn't mean you can't enjoy a Christmas feast! Try this fabulous Vegetable Walnut Loaf with Miso and Mushroom Gravy, followed by Poached Pears for dessert for a very merry vegan Christmas."