Yotam Ottolenghi’s vegetarian Christmas: rice pie, sticky sprouts and yoghurty beans – recipes (2024)

Don’t let the absence of a big bird get in the way of having a Christmas centrepiece. As no vegetarian needs pointing out, far from playing second fiddle in the form of assorted vegetable sides, a fully veggie feast can knock the Christmas bauble right out of the ice rink, so to speak. Such a dish wants for nothing, save for a couple of sides, so let’s all come together and let the food-filled festivities begin.

Christmas rice pie with crisp sage and fried almonds (pictured top)

Inspired by a celebratory Azerbaijani shakh plov, which is a bit like a pilaf wrapped in crisp pastry, this centrepiece looks like the best of presents, all wrapped up. Don’t be put off by all the different elements: they can all be prepared a day ahead, ready to be assembled and baked on the big day. Serve with yoghurt.

Prep 40 min
Cook 2 hr
Serves 6-8

9 large (37cm x 47cm) sheets Turkish filo (yufka) or good-quality regular filo
60g ghee, melted

For the onions
60g ghee
600g brown onions
, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
25g sage, picked and finely chopped
30g dried porcini, soaked in 500ml boiling water, then drained – reserve the water
15g cumin seeds
Fine sea salt and black pepper

For the mushrooms and squash
700g mixed mushrooms, cut into roughly 2cm pieces
1 medium butternut squash (600g), peeled and cut into ¾cm-thick rounds
45g ghee, melted
200g ready-cooked chestnuts
2 tbsp sherry vinegar
100ml double cream
300ml vegetable stock
20g flat-leaf parsley
, finely chopped

For the rice
300g basmati rice, washed and soaked in plenty of cold water for at least an hour
50g dried cranberries
50g flat-leaf parsley
, finely chopped
1 lemon, rind stripped off with a peeler in 7 wide strips, then juiced, to get 2 tsp

For the crisp sage and fried almonds
60g ghee
10g sage leaves
20g flaked almonds

Heat the oven to 240C (220C)/475F/gas 9. Put all the ingredients for the onions except the porcini soaking water in a large saute pan on a medium-high heat, add a half-teaspoon of salt and cook, stirring often, for 30-35 minutes, until deeply caramelised. Transfer to a large bowl.

Meanwhile, put the mixed mushrooms and squash in a large bowl, and toss with the ghee, a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper. Put the mushrooms and squash on two separate large oven trays and bake the squash for 10-12 minutes, until just softened and slightly charred at the edges, and the mushrooms for 15-20 minutes, until lightly browned.

Return the clean onion pan to a medium-high heat, add the roast mushrooms, chestnuts and a quarter of the caramelised onion mix, and cook, stirring, for two minutes. Pour in the vinegar, cream and stock, stir to combine, and cook for about six minutes, until the sauce is thick and clinging to the mushrooms. Take off the heat and stir in the parsley.

Fill a large saucepan with two and a half litres of water, add the reserved porcini soaking water and three tablespoons of salt, and bring to a boil. Turn down the heat to medium, drain the rice and tip it into the pan. Cook for seven minutes, then drain and put in the bowl with the remaining onions. Gently stir in the cranberries, parsley and strips of lemon zest.

Line the base of a 23cm springform cake tin with two sheets of baking paper large enough to overhang the two sides by 10cm (the paper will help you lift out the pie later on), then brush the sides of the tin with ghee.

Heat the oven to 200C (180C fan)/390F/gas 6. Take one sheet of filo and cover the rest with a clean, slightly damp tea towel. Brush the top of the filo with melted ghee, transfer to the tin and press into the base, letting the excess hang over the sides. Repeat this process six more times with six sheets of the remaining filo, each time rotating the sheets a little when you press them into the tin, so they overhang at a different angle. Brush the last two sheets of filo with ghee, fold them in half and place inside the tin, so they cover the base and sides.

Pour half the rice into the tin and press down gently to even it out. Arrange the squash on top, followed by the mushrooms and the rest of the rice, then fold in three of the overhanging filo sheets to cover the filling. Fold and ruffle the remaining four overhanging filo sheets, so the pie looks a bit like a crown.

Transfer the tin to a tray, then bake for 50-60 minutes, until deeply golden and crisp. Remove, leave to cool for five minutes, then unclip and transfer to a large platter.

Meanwhile, fry the sage. Put the ghee in a small frying pan on a medium-high heat, add the sage and fry, stirring occasionally, for two to three minutes, until translucent. Drain through a small sieve set over a bowl, then return the hot ghee to the pan, add the almonds and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt, and cook, stirring, for two minutes, just until the nuts turn golden.

Pour the almonds and ghee over the filo pie, scatter the crisp sage on top and serve.

Brussels sprouts, orange and tarragon

Yotam Ottolenghi’s vegetarian Christmas: rice pie, sticky sprouts and yoghurty beans – recipes (1)

The annual quest to showcase sprouts in a non-boiled way, not least to convert the naysayers, continues. Here, they’re sticky, salty, nutty and delicious, and the whole dish can be cooked up to a day in advance – keep the sprouts and sauce separate, though, and reheat and combine just before serving.

Prep 10 min
Cook 25 min
Serves 4-6 as a side

750g brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthways
90ml olive oil
Fine sea salt and black pepper
50g peeled pistachios
, lightly crushed in a mortar
2 oranges, zest finely grated, to get 2 tsp, then juiced, to get 250ml
2 tbsp soy sauce
2 tbsp maple syrup
5g tarragon leaves

Heat the oven to its highest setting – at least 240C (220C fan)/475F/gas 9. Toss the halved sprouts with the oil, half a teaspoon of salt and a good grind of pepper, then spread out on a large baking tray lined with greaseproof paper and roast for 10 minutes. Stir in the pistachios and roast for another 10 minutes, until the sprouts are nicely browned and the pistachios have toasted.

Meanwhile, put the orange zest and juice, soy sauce and maple syrup in a small saucepan on a medium-high heat, and leave to cook for five to eight minutes, until the sauce has reduced by three-quarters and has turned syrupy.

Once the sprouts are cooked, pour the syrup all over them, scatter over half the tarragon and toss to combine. Transfer to a platter, sprinkle over the remaining tarragon and serve.

Green beans in jurot dressing with fried breadcrumbs

Yotam Ottolenghi’s vegetarian Christmas: rice pie, sticky sprouts and yoghurty beans – recipes (2)

Bookmark this recipe for Christmas and beyond: it works for all seasons, and the beans can be happily replaced by all sorts of other green veg such as brussels sprouts or cavolo nero. Jurot dressing is both light and rich, and is just as good warm as at room temperature. It is especially popular with Bukharian Jews from Uzbekistan, and came to me via Lilian Cordell, my colleague Jake’s aunt, who has documented all her mother’s recipes in a book, Miriam’s Table (£15, thebukhariancookbook.com). The beans can be cooked and dressed up to three hours ahead of time, but don’t mix in the tarragon and breadcrumbs until just before serving.

Prep 10 min
Cook 15 min
Serves 4 as a side

75g soured cream
50g cream cheese
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
Salt and black pepper
400g green beans
2 tbsp olive oil
¾ tsp sweet paprika
¾ tsp fennel seeds
, crushed in a mortar
40g panko breadcrumbs
5g tarragon leaves

Put the soured cream, cream cheese, lemon juice and a quarter-teaspoon of salt in a large bowl, whisk until smooth, then set aside.

Bring a medium pot of water to a boil, add a tablespoon of salt and the beans, and blanch for five minutes, until tender. Drain the beans through a colander, leave them to steam for a minute, then, while they’re still hot, add them to the creamy dressing and toss gently to coat well. Leave to cool to room temperature.

Put a medium frying pan on a medium heat. Add the oil, spices and a good grind of black pepper, and fry for 30 seconds. Stir in the breadcrumbs and an eighth of a teaspoon of salt and fry, stirring frequently, for five minutes, until golden and crisp. Tip the breadcrumbs on to a plate lined with kitchen roll to drain and cool.

Stir the tarragon leaves through the green bean mix, then pile it all high on a serving platter, alternating with layers of the fried breadcrumbs and saving a big handful of the crumbs to sprinkle on top at the end. Serve at room temperature.

Fiona Beckett’s drink pairing
Pinot Noir Baden 2022 (£9.99 Lidl, 12.5%): an absolutely delicious, juicy pinot noir that will take all these big flavours in its stride.

Yotam Ottolenghi’s vegetarian Christmas: rice pie, sticky sprouts and yoghurty beans – recipes (2024)


How many recipes are in Ottolenghi Simple? ›

130 brilliantly simple, brand-new recipes from the bestselling author of Plenty, Plenty More, Jerusalem and Ottolenghi- The Cookbook.

What is Ottolenghi style? ›

From this, Ottolenghi has developed a style of food which is rooted in Middle Eastern and Mediterranean traditions, but which also draws in diverse influences and ingredients from around the world.

Who is Otto Lingo chef? ›

Yotam Assaf Ottolenghi (born 14 December 1968) is an Israeli-born British chef, restaurateur, and food writer.

What is the best Ottolenghi? ›

Ottolenghi Classics
  • Roasted pumpkin wedges with chestnut, cinnamon & fresh bay leaves. ...
  • Roasted potatoes with caramel & Agen prunes. ...
  • Char-grilled sprouting broccoli with sweet tahini. ...
  • Cinnamon pavlova, praline cream and fresh figs (SWEET pg 291) ...
  • Green herb salad. ...
  • Roasted sweet potato with pecan and maple.

Who is Yotam Ottolenghi's husband? ›

Why is Ottolenghi famous? ›

Yotam Ottolenghi is a famous Israeli born British chef who is well known for his group of delis, as well as cookbooks and TV appearances.

Who is the CEO of Ottolenghi? ›

Emilio Foa, who was previously CEO of furniture retailer OKA and former CFO of fashion brand Burberry, became the first CEO of Ottolenghi Group in April. The move, Foa claims, allows Ottolenghi to focus on the creative side of the business, while he works on operational logistics, brand growth and marketing strategy.

What is an Ottolenghi salad? ›

Mixed Bean Salad

by Yotam Ottolenghi, Sami Tamimi. from Jerusalem. Crisp and fragrant, this salad combines lemon, tarragon, capers, garlic, spring onions, coriander and cumin seeds to bring its base of of yellow beans, French beans, and red peppers to life.

Who is the chef that can sing? ›

Andy LoRusso- Known all over the globe as The Singing Chef, is a best selling Author, Recording Artist, Celebrity Chef & Entertainer. Since his childhood days growing up in Newark, New Jersey, Andy found his passion for not only authentic Italian food but music.

What celebrity chef can sing? ›

Andy LoRusso -- "The Singing Chef" -- is a best-selling author and cooking icon, thanks to the success and ongoing popularity of his timeless book, Sing and Cook Italian, and his unique cooking-cabaret shows.

Why did Otto leave Top chef? ›

^Note 1 : The chef(s) did not receive immunity for winning the Quickfire Challenge. ^Note 2 : Otto voluntarily withdrew before Lakshmi eliminated anyone, deciding that his misconduct over the unpaid lychees contributed the most to his team's loss.

How many cookbooks does Ottolenghi have? ›

find Yotam on

He has co-authored and published eight cookbooks, including Plenty and Jerusalem, SIMPLE , FLAVOUR , and his latest, Ottolenghi Test Kitchen: Shelf Love. Ottolenghi is also a weekly columist for The Guardian.

How many recipes in a recipe book? ›

The standard expectation is that a cookbook should have between 70 and 100 recipes, but larger compendiums have at least 200.

How many cooking recipes are in core keeper? ›

Cooking Guide. As of 0.7. 3-a28f, there are 68 total cooking ingredients in Core Keeper, including the Halloween-exclusive Grumpkin/Golden Grumpkin and permanent health increase items. This means there are over 2300+ unique food items that can be made using any combination of the ingredients.

How many recipes are in the Avatar cookbook? ›

The book takes place during the time of Avatar: The Last Airbender up to the early days of Republic City. It collects 62 recipes.

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