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Despite having a passion for food, working in a kitchen for two years and being English, I’m ashamed to say I had never cooked a roast dinner until Christmas 2016. Naturally, my first effort would involve attempting to cook one entirely on a barbecue in the Peneda-Geres national park, Portugal.

I’ll say this now so as not to disappoint anyone – it was a vegetarian affair. Please don’t let that deter you from having a read, though, as a former lover of meat I can assure you it was far from tasteless and even further from disappointment. From delightfully roasted veggies to crispy, fluffy yorkies, I’ll show you how we managed to cook a full roast dinner on a barbie with just a few pans and a roasting tray.

The Menu:

Smoked vegetarian hot dogs

Seitan slices in gravy

Cheesy leeks

Roasted potatoes

Roasted carrots with garlic and rosemary

Sesame-fried Kale 

Yorkshire puddings

Sage and onion Stuffing

The Tools:

1 medium roasting tray

2 mini roasting trays 

1 griddle

1 Mixing bowl

2 large sauscepans

1 small saucepan

1 large frying pan

1 dutch oven (we used a wok but would recommend something without a glass lid)

Cheesy leeks

Ingredients:

  • 4 leeks, chopped

  • 50g butter

  • 50g plain flour

  • 450ml milk

  • 150g grated Cheddar

  • 25g parmesan

  • 1tbsp english mustard

  • Sriacha, dash of

  • 3 bay leaves

  • Nutmeg, pinch of
     

Method:

  • Cut off the tops and tails of the leeks then cut them into thumb-sized pieces.

  • Bring a pan to the boil on the fire and simmer the leeks for 10 minutes.

  • Drain and place in mixing bowl.

  • Wipe out the saucepan and melt the butter in it.

  • Remove from heat and add flour. Once mixed, return to fire and slowly add milk until you achieve a creamy roux.

  • Add cheese, nutmeg, bay leaves, sriachi and mustard.

  • Stir until cheese has melted, add leeks and season to taste.

  • Set aside in saucepan to be reheated later.

Order of preperation:

  1. Boil potatoes, drain and leave to one side. Re-using the saucepan, cook the cheesy leeks following the instructions below. Once finished, leave to one side. 
     

  2. Now follow instructions for the roasted potatoes and carrots, ensuring they stay cooking whilst you are completing future steps.
     

  3. Using the mixing bowl, follow instructions for the yorkshire pudding batter. Whilst doing this, heat up your dutch oven on the fire. Leave the potatoes and carrots on the fire. rest the batter whilst your oven heats up (30 mins).
     

  4. Heat oil in the baking trays. Pour the batter mix in to the miniature baking trays. When the dutch oven is up to an appropriate temperature, place the baking trays inside and quickly close the lid. The Yorkshire puddings should take around 30 minutes to cook. Your potatoes and carrots should be finished by this stage too. Leave them wrapped up to ensure they stay warm and  continue infusing.
     

  5. Whilst waiting, follow instructions for the stuffing and gravy.
     

  6. Remove the dutch oven from the fire, leaving the Yorkshire puddings inside to ensure they stay warm.
     

  7. Griddle your vegetarian hot dogs and seitan until piping hot. Once cooked through, add to dutch oven to keep warm.
     

  8. Follow instructions for kale.
     

  9. Finally, reheat the cheesy leeks and anything else necessary. Serve immediately and enjoy! 

Roasted potatoes and carrots

Ingredients:

  • Desired amount of potatoes and carrots

  • 1 onion, roughly chopped

  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled and whole

  • A handful of rosemary sprigs

  • Salt and pepper

  • 2 tablespoons oil
     

Method:

  • Boil a saucepan of water on the fire. Add potatoes and cook thoroughly.

  • Place two layers of foil in your roasting tray along the bottom, ensuring there is an overhang on all edges enabling you to fold it over the top later.

  • Wash the carrots but don’t peel them. Place the carrots, potatoes, roughly chopped onion, garlic and rosemary in the tray. Drizzle plenty of oil over everything and finally a dash of salt and pepper.

  • Completely cover and wrap with tin foil

  • Roast for 20 minutes. Open foil cover, shake well, cover and return to fire. Add more oil if required. Keep checking regularly until everything is nicely browned and cooked to your preferences.

Yorkshire Puddings
 

Ingredients:

  • 100g flour

  • 2 eggs

  • 150ml milk

  • Pinch of salt
     

Method:

  • Mix eggs, flour, milk and salt into a smooth batter using a fork, whisking thoroughly to create air bubbles, then rest for half an hour.

  • Heat oil in baking trays then pour the batter into the baking trays.

  • Place back in dutch oven, cover with lid and leave for approx. 30 mins. Do NOT open the lid at any point once the Yorkshire pudding is in.

Sage and onion stuffing / gravy

Ingredients :

  • 100g stale bread, torn into chunks

  • 1 large onion, thinly sliced

  • 1 knob of butter

  • 1tsp dried sage

  • Salt and pepper

  • 1tsp oil

Method:

  • Heat oil in saucepan and soften onion.

  • Add all remaining ingredients, mix thoroughly and cook until bread becomes crispy.

For the gravy:

  • In a small saucepan, bring 150ml water to the boil over the fire. Mix in one stock cube and a dash of soy sauce. In a small bowl, add a heaped teaspoon of corn flour and a drop of water and mix into a paste. add the flour mix slowly to the gravy until a thick consistency is met, whisking constantly. 

Kale

Ingredients:

  • Generous bunch of fresh kale

  • 1 tsp. oil

  • Sesame seeds, pinch of

 

Method:

  • Wash kale and remove any thick stems, cut in to small strips

  • Heat oil in large frying pan, add kale and sesame seeds

  • Once the kale has reduced by around half, season with salt and serve