© 2018 Green Kitchen Stories Green_Christmas_2018_1

Green Christmas 2018 – vegan edition

The tree is already covered with colorful glass balls, small hand drawn paper Santas and tinsels, we have got light strands hanging around the windows, the presents are wrapped and Sinatra is playing from the kitchen speakers. It’s five days left to Christmas Eve and I don’t think we have ever prepared ahead for the holidays like this before. We have even cooked all the Christmas food. Twice! Well, three times actually. One was for our early celebration with David’s family. The other was to shoot these photos. And the third time because David is manic about testing recipes three times. We’ve got this.

Sharing Christmas recipe roundups seems almost obligatory when you work with food. This year we asked what type of recipes you were looking for and many mentioned more vegan dishes for your holiday feasts, so that is what we have done here.

I am not going to pretend that we are good at organizing big dinner parties, we are truly not. But we do have one method that we live by: Focus on having a good base of dishes and then ask guests to each bring a small side dish, drink, snack or dessert. That way you can have a generous buffet of food without the accompanying stress meltdown. Our cabbage parcels make a beautiful centerpiece with delicious mustard roasted roots and crispy smashed potatoes as warm sides. Because all of these dishes are quite rich, we also like to serve a fresh, tangy and crunchy salad on the side. Along with red cabbage Christmas krauts from our Green Kitchen at Home book. You’ll find the recipes here below.

A few other favorites from the archives are our vegan Aubergine Polpette (perhaps with a gravy on the side), our Mushroom & Hazelnut Loaf, this one-tray Hasselback Potatoes with Kale and Pesto, the Pumpkin, Kale and Buckwheat Salad that we had for our wedding, this Black Quinoa & Kale Salad from dinosaur time (we’ve been making this for Christmas almost every year), and this Crispy Red Cabbage & Grape Salad (red cabbage salads are obligatory for all Danes on Christmas).

We actually have one more recipe that we haven’t had time to post yet. It’s a really good gingerbread bundt cake and we’ll do our best to post the recipe before Christmas Eve (if you have our app, it is already available on there).

Happy holidays!
/Luise, David and all the kids!

GKS_christmas_rolls

Stuffed Cabbage Parcels
Makes 8 parcels

These pretty little parcels are stuffed with rice, lentils, walnuts and raisins and cooked in a holiday spiced tomato broth. They are a little fiddly to make but super flavorful and well worth the effort. This recipe is vegan but you could also add feta cheese to the parcels if you feel like it.

Filling
– 100 g / ½ cup uncooked red rice (see note)
– 100 g / ½ cup uncooked puy lentils
– 500 ml / 2 cups water
– ½ tsp sea salt
– 1 tbsp olive oil
– 1 large red onion, peeled and finely chopped
– 1 clove garlic, peeled and finely chopped
– 1 cup walnuts, finely chopped
– 4 tbsp raisins
– 2 tbsp lemon juice
– 4 tbsp chopped parsley

Tomato Broth
– 750 ml / 3 cups vegetable stock
– 1 x 400 g / 14 oz tin crushed tomatoes
– 1 tsp whole cloves
– 1 tsp whole allspice
– 2 star anise
– 2 cinnamon sticks
– 1 pinch sea salt

Assembling
– 1 savoy cabbage
– 8 pieces of cooking string
– 1 tbsp olive oil to fry in

Instructions
1. Rinse rice and lentils in a sieve under running water.
2. Transfer to a saucepan and add water and salt. Bring to a boil, lower the heat and let simmer until tender, for about 35 minutes or according to the time on the package.
3. Place another sauce pan with the Tomato Broth ingredients on the stove, bring to a boil and then turn the heat down and let it slowly simmer under a lid for 20 minutes on low heat.
4. Meanwhile, add oil to a large skillet and sauté onion and garlic for 10 minutes on medium heat or until soft and translucent.
5. Transfer the onion to a bowl and wipe out the pan (you will use it to fry and cook the parcels in later on).
6. Drain any excess water from the rice and lentils. Add the onion and garlic, walnuts, raisins, lemon juice and parsley and stir to combine.
7. Carefully break off 8 leaves of the savoy cabbage. Trim off the thickest part of the stalk.
8. Blanch the savoy cabbage leaves in a sauce pan with salted boiling water for 2-3 minutes. Drain and lay out on a tea towel.
9. Spoon 3 tablespoons of filling into the center of each cabbage leaf. Fold up and tie with the string. Repeat with the remaining seven.
10. Place all parcels in a heated skillet with a little oil added. Fry on both sides until browned.
11. Pour the broth into the pan with the cabbage parcels (the pan should be half filled). Put a lid on and let simmer for about 30 minutesor until the cabbage feels soft and tender (you can cook the parcels for a shorter time if you prefer them a little crunchier).
12. Serve the parcels with a little broth poured on top. Remove the strings before eating ;)

Note
– We cook the rice and lentils for the filling together, just make sure that they have similar cooking times. If not, start with the one with the longest time and then add the other accordingly. Or cook in separate pans.

GKS_smashed_potatoes

Smashed Balsamic Potatoes
Serves 4 as a side

This rustic potato recipe combine three different potato methods into one – boiled, mashed and roasted. They are crispy on the outside, soft on the inside with a sweet tanginess added from balsamic vinegar.

Ingredients
– 1 kg / 2 lb small potatoes
– 2 tsp salt
– 3 tbsp olive oil
– 1 1/2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
– 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
– a few sprigs fresh thyme

Preparation
1. Set the oven to 225°C / 450°F.
2. Wash the potatoes (keep the skin on) and place in a large sauce pan.
3. Cover with water and add 1 tsp salt. Cook for about 20 minutes (longer if you use bigger potatoes) or until easily pierced with a fork.
4. Drain the water and leave to cool for a bit.
5. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and place the potatoes on it.
6. Smash the potatoes by pressing down on them using the backside of a glass.
7. Whisk together oil, balsamic vinegar and garlic.
9. Drizzle generously over the potatoes, making sure that you get it into all the nooks and crannies. You can use a brush for this as well.
10. Sprinkle with salt and thyme leaves.
11. Place in the oven and roast for 25 minutes or until the potatoes are crispy and golden brown.

Tip
– This is perfect as a side for 4 persons but you can easily double the recipe if you are cooking for a crowd. Just use two baking sheets and set the oven to fan mode and lower the temp slightly for more evenly distributed heat.

GKS_mustard_roasted_roots

Mustard Roasted Roots
Serves 4 as a side

We love a good tray of roasted roots. Here we have coated the roots in cinnamon, grainy mustard, a little vinegar and maple syrup and roasted them until they start to caramelize. We serve these with a saffron sauce which basically is this turmeric tahini sauce but with saffron instead of turmeric. But a simple yogurt based sauce could be great too.

Ingredients

– 1 kg / 2 lb mixed roots (parsnip, carrots, swede, sweet potato)

Dressing
– 3 tbsp olive oil
– 2 tbsp grainy mustard
– 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
– 1 tsp ground cinnamon
– 1 tsp maple syrup
– 1 tsp sea salt

To Serve
– 2 tbsp hemp seeds or finely chopped almonds

Preparation
1. Preheat the oven to 180°C / 375°F.
2. Peel the roots and chop into batons (roughly 10 cm long and 1,5 cm thick).
3. Stir together the dressing ingredients in a large mixing bowl.
4. Add the roots and toss until all are covered.
5. Tip out on a baking sheet covered with parchment paper and spread out in an even layer.
6. Place in the oven and roast for 20 minutes. Give the sheet a toss, then crank up the heat to 225°C / 450°F and bake for 20 minutes more or until golden and slightly charred.
7. Transfer the roots to a serving platter and sprinkle with hemp seeds.

Tips
– This is perfect as a side for 4 persons but you can easily double the recipe if you are cooking for a crowd. Just use two baking sheets and set the oven to fan mode for more evenly distributed heat.
– You can use any root for this but swede, carrots, sweet potato and parsnips are our favorites.

 

Crispy Celery and Orange Salad
Serves 4

– 1 head romain lettuce or cosmopolitan
– 4 celery stalks (or fennel)
– 2 oranges
– 4 tbsp toasted hazelnuts

Mustard vinaigrette
– 2 tbsp olive oil
– 1 tbsp vinegar
– 1 tsp Dijon mustard
– 1 tsp maple syrup

1. Rinse the lettuce in water and chop into 2 inch / 5 cm large pieces, discarding the stem.
2. Thinly slice the celery stalks (or mandolin the fennel of using).
3. Peel the oranges and cut in halves and thinly slice each half.
4. Place all prepped ingredients into a large mixing bowl.
5. Whisk together the vinaigrette ingredients in a small separate bowl.
6. Gently toss the dressing with the salad ingredients.
7. Chop the toasted hazelnuts.
8. Transfer to a serving bowl and scatter with hazelnuts. Serve!

21 Comments

  1. Posted 19 Dec ’18 at 11:09 | #

    Definitely going to try my hand at one of your recipes. They sound so refreshing, perfect for a light Christmas dinner! The Crispy Celery and Orange Salad is my favourite!

    Charmaine Ng | Architecture & Lifestyle Blog
    http://charmainenyw.com

  2. Emma
    Posted 19 Dec ’18 at 14:17 | #

    What a beautiful spread! Love the look of those potatoes!

  3. Posted 19 Dec ’18 at 18:44 | #

    I saved the root veg recipe! Will be making it at mine now :)

    chevrons & éclairs

  4. Posted 19 Dec ’18 at 21:37 | #

    Hi Luise,
    3 times of testing every recipe?? Well, that’s what I call ambitious :)
    Anyways, if the outcome looks like the pictures above, it’s well worth the effort.
    All the dishes look mouth-watering delicious, and I love the vibrant colors. 💚 Need to pin these right away and maybe some of it will be recreated for our xmas dinner next week.
    Have lovely holidays!
    xo, Romy

    In Love with Bliss – plantiful recipes nourishing body & soul

  5. Stefania
    Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 09:08 | #

    Everything looks and sounds so delicious! What can be made ahead of time for example the day before so not to be as stressed on Christmas Eve?

    Thank you!/Stefania

    • Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 10:52 | #

      Hi Stefania,
      The potatoes and roasted roots will taste better fresh but you could prepare any sauces ahead of time and make the filling for the cabbage parcels and roll them up so you can just cook them in the broth on Christmas Eve.
      /David

      • Stefania
        Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 13:06 | #

        Thanks and God Jul!

  6. Mia
    Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 16:39 | #

    Thank you for all these beautiful and inspiring recipes! Our Christmas will be a lot more green this year! I have a question-are you using white balsamic vinegar for the potatoes to keep their golden color? Also, for the Saffron Sauce-isn’t it too watery if you ‘replace’ the tahini sauce with saffron as you suggested? Merry Christmas and God Jul

  7. Mirte Kaan
    Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 17:34 | #

    Love this Christmas post with Vegan options! <3 Those Mustard roasted roots sound great with that christmas-kinda combo of flavors, i think i’m gonna putt those in the oven tonight already for a pre-christmas dinner ;)! Little question about the saffron sauce that goes with it: do you sub the tahini or the turmeric with saffron?
    /Mirte

    • Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 23:01 | #

      Oh sorry! The saffron of course replaces the turmeric, not the tahini.
      Thanks for noticing. We’ve changed the text now.
      /D

  8. Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 17:38 | #

    So excited to see a vegan menu! Looking forward to trying them all. Wishing you a festive holiday season. :)

  9. Sigi Wiese
    Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 20:57 | #

    Hi there, sounds and looks delicious as always!
    I am interested in the turmeric, no tahini sauce. Replace 1 cup of tahini with some strands of soaked saffron?? I rarely use saffron and wonder whether that’s the way to do it?
    Happy holidays from down under
    sigi

    • Posted 20 Dec ’18 at 23:07 | #

      Hi Sigi,
      Actually that was a mistake in the text. To make the saffron sauce you follow the recipe but replace the turmeric with just a pinch of saffron.
      /David

      • Sigi Wiese
        Posted 21 Dec ’18 at 20:34 | #

        Thanks for your speedy reply, I roasted the veggies last night and the spice combo is a winner.
        Happy Holidays
        sigi

  10. Karin
    Posted 21 Dec ’18 at 12:42 | #

    So, if U understand correctly the replacement for 1 cup tahini, 2 cups of water, half a lemon, ginger and 2 tbsp turmeric is a pinch of saffron in the dressing. Or do I still use 1 cup of tahini … I am a little confused now..

  11. Elizabeth Caumont
    Posted 21 Dec ’18 at 16:42 | #

    Wow!!! I have been researching vegan Christmas recipes for DAYS, and then this perfect little menu popped up on my Instagram feed. Will definitely be making the cabbage rolls as our main this year!

    Do you think I could throw in some mushrooms instead of the walnuts? My husband has a tree nut allergy and I know that mushrooms won’t replace the crunch but will give the rolls some heft.

    Thoughts?

    Merry merry Christmas to your beautiful fam!

    • Posted 23 Dec ’18 at 22:29 | #

      Yes, mushrooms would work great in this dish instead of walnuts. Perhaps you could add some sunflower or pumpkin seeds as well for a bit of crunch?
      Good luck!

  12. Posted 23 Dec ’18 at 13:05 | #

    Thanks for these vegetarian ideas for Christmas! It is a wonderful selection. I can only imagine how long it took you to put it all together. As a true vegan, I really like your suggestions. I especially loved the recipe of stuffed cabbage parcels. I plan to try it soon.

  13. Posted 28 Dec ’18 at 05:14 | #

    All three of these sound delicious. Stuffed Cabbage Parcels, whoa! What a fun and creative idea. I like to pick options like this because I can do a lot of the prep work ahead of time. These smashed potatoes and root vegetables may make an appearance on our table this weekend. Thank you for the inspiration! Yum!

  14. Posted 15 Jan ’19 at 10:18 | #

    I am not a vegan but some of these recipes got me excited. I will definitely try smashed potatoes and cabbage parcels. I will pass on Crispy Celery and Orange Salad as hate celery.

  15. Posted 16 Jan ’19 at 03:36 | #

    Thanks for sharing
    https://coolkitchenutensils.com

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