I was so excited to get round to Rainbows and Wellies for a few reasons
- There is a naked man with a bunch of bananas on the cover
- The book is co-written by Tony Bishop Weston, someone who I know to be a great vegan chef
I was happy that I could get some laughs cooking from this book but also that I wouldn’t have to raid the freezer for onion rings, which has been happening all too often over the last few weeks. Don’t get me wrong, I love onion rings… but I hate failure.
I’m annoyed with myself that only over the last few weeks I’ve paid this book any real attention, it’s really interesting and there’s some great looking recipes in there. The book is a 14 night menu from the now closed down Vegan Guesthouse Taigh na Mara, based in Scotland. The pictures, recipes and stories inside the book reflect the area the hotel was in.
It was incredibly hard to narrow down my options here, but I chose a dish that I couldn’t imagine making vegan myself. I did change the recipe slightly, just omitting things I didn’t have in the house, but this was definitely a success
- 425g plain white flour
- 170g soya butter
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 pint cold water
- 1 carrot, grated
- 50g oats fried in 1 tbsp soya butter for 2-3 mins
- 2 tbsp tamari
- 100g oyster mushrooms (fresh or dried and soaked in hot water for 20 minutes)
- 2 onions, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
- chestnut puree
- 1 packet of smoked tofu, grated
- 50g breadcrumbs
- To make the pastry sift the flour and salt into a large bowl. Rub in the soya butter until it has a breadcrumb like texture. Slowly add the cold water and mix until a dough forms.
- Preheat the oven to 200C. Line a pie dish with some of the pastry (the leftovers will be used for a lattice effect on top)
- Fry the oyster mushrooms, garlic and onions in a little oil for 4-5 minutes, add the tamari and fry for a further few minutes, set to one side.
- Layer the ingredients into the pie in the following order: breadcrumbs/grated tofu/mushrooms/chestnut puree (i just crumbled this in my hands and scattered it over the top)/grated carrot/oats
- Top with lattice pastry and pop into the oven for 30-40 minutes. Allow to cool before serving
I served mine with chips, mushy peas and onion gravy. It was so good! The mushrooms gave this a really meaty texture and I loved the smokiness the tofu brought to the dish. It was great and definitely something I would make again.
This has taught me a lesson. Never treat a book like a funny joke just because there’s a naked man with a bunch of bananas on the front. I’m looking forward to returning to this after Mofo with a slightly more serious expression on my face.