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The Happy Pear's spring vegetable casserole with asparagus & herbed crust
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Serves: 4 - 6
2 tbsp oil
175g asparagus, trimmed
1 large red onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 red chilli, chopped
700g sweet potato, scrubbed, cut into bitesize pieces
300g leeks, halved lengthways, washed and sliced
400g courgettes, cut into bitesize pieces
200g broccoli, cut into small florets and the stalk finely chopped
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon and the juice of ½
15g mint, leaves only, finely chopped
For the béchamel sauce
3 tbsp olive oil
3 tbsp plain flour
Pinch ground nutmeg
350ml oat drink
250ml Cooks’ Ingredients Vegetable Stock
2 tbsp tamari or soy sauce
For the breadcrumbs
100g fresh breadcrumbs
10g thyme leaves, chopped
1 tbsp oil
1. Preheat the oven to 200ºC, gas mark 6. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a shallow casserole dish over a high heat, fry the asparagus for 2-3 minutes or until lightly charred, remove and set aside. (Cut any large spears in half.)
2. Add the remaining oil to the pan and fry the onion, garlic and chilli for 3 minutes. Add the sweet potato, season and cook for 2-3 minutes, then add the remaining veg. Cover and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally until the potato is soft. Mix well, scraping up any bits from the bottom of the pan, then stir in the lemon juice and zest with the mint and set aside.
3. For the béchamel sauce, heat a pan with the oil over a medium heat. Sieve in the flour and whisk for 1 minute, add the nutmeg, seasoning and oat drink, whisking continuously and bring to the boil. Remove from the heat when thickened, then stir in the stock and tamari and pour over the veg. Top with the asparagus.
4 Combine all the breadcrumb ingredients and sprinkle on top. Bake for 10-15 minutes until piping hot throughout and golden.
Typical values per serving:
This recipe was first published in April 2019.