12 December, 2022

This is a luxurious recipe bursting with textures and flavours that will bring a smile to your face. You’ll feel you’ve gone back in time when rustic loaves were real crowd-pleasers. It’s great for adjusting to seasonal changes, and it’s packed full of goodness.

This is a great Sunday lunch but packs a punch as a quick left-over meal served with salad or steamed vegetables. Enjoy this 70s Throwback Nutty Loaf Roast with garlicky tomato sauce.

Serves 4

Preparation time: 2 hours

For the loaf 

A couple of tbsp olive oil 

1 white onion and 1 red onion (finely chopped) 

2 garlic cloves, crushed then chopped finely 

1 tsp of mild chilli powder 

2 fennel (or celery) sticks, finely chopped 

1 tsp dried mixed herbs

1 tsp  paprika 

150g mixed unsalted nuts any that you like 

300g mixed mushrooms, sliced 

1 red pepper, finely diced 

1 courgette, grated 

200g of mixed red, brown or green lentils and kidney beans, white beans 

1 large carrot, grated 

2 tbsp tomato purée 

300ml vegetable stock 

100g dried / stale breadcrumbs (ideally sourdough sliced and left out overnight to dry out, then either roughly chop or blend into crumbs) 

3 eggs, lightly beaten 

A handful of grated mature cheddar or parmesan or any hard cheese you like 

A handful of fresh parsley, thyme and dill finely chopped 

For the tomato sauce 

2 tbsp olive oil 

2 garlic cloves, crushed and then sliced 

A handful of fresh rosemary, parsley, dill, thyme 

400g passata in a glass jar

How to cook 

  1. Heat the oven to 180C/ fan 160C/ gas 4.
  2. Lightly grease the base and sides of a 1.5-litre loaf tin (where possible, avoid non-stick cookware).
  3. Heat the olive in a large frying pan and cook onions, fennel and/or celery, sweating on low to mid heat for about 5 to 10 mins until they are soft and release a sweet smell.
  4. Add garlic and mixed mushrooms to the pan and gently fry for a further 10 minutes. 
  5. Add pepper, grated carrot and courgette, mixed herbs, chilli and paprika and fry gently for 5 minutes.
  6. Add lentils, beans and tomato purée and fry for 1 minute.
  7. Add vegetable stock and simmer over a very gentle heat for 30 mins until all the liquid has been absorbed so it looks like a paste. Set aside to cool a little.
  8. Add breadcrumbs, chopped mixed nuts, grated cheese, fresh herb, beaten eggs and a pinch of salt and pepper and stir well until all the ingredients are well incorporated into a doughy mixture.  
  9. Spoon the mixture into the greased loaf tin and gently press down into shape but don’t compress too much; you want to keep some air in the mixture. 
  10. Cover with foil and bake for 30 mins, then remove the foil and bake for a further 20 mins until risen and firm. 
  11. For the tomato sauce, gently heat the remaining olive oil, add garlic cloves and fresh herbs and sweat over gentle heat. 
  12. Add the passata and a pinch of salt and pepper. Simmer gently for 20 mins. 
  13. Remove the loaf from the oven and cool for about 10 mins then turn it onto a plate or serving board. 
  14. Cut in slices, pour tomato sauce on top and serve with roasted or steamed vegetables  – yum!

Tip

If you have leftovers cut into slices and freeze them for a ready-made meal

Enjoyed this nutty loaf roast recipe and are craving more like this? Breast Cancer Uk’s brand new recipe e-book is out now! Download (for free) ‘Organic Flavours’ today. What are you waiting for? Get cooking. 



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