Monday 11 November 2013

Vegetable Bake with Applewood Mash

Vegetable Bake with Applewood Mash
There's no denying that it is now the time of year for comfort food. It's dark in the morning, dark by late afternoon and grey, raining and blustery inbetween. Comfort food usually points to something that is tasty but actually not that good for you. This dish is different. It's full of vegetables to fill you with vitamins and minerals but hearty enough to warm you through. I made this on Halloween evening while my little monsters were out trick or treating. It can be prepared in advance and then simply put in the oven to heat through.

This recipe was inspired by the lovely hamper sent to me by Applewood Spreadable. As part of their blogger challenge they have asked a number of food bloggers to create dishes using their delicious smoky cheddar cheese spread.

Since there is a large amount of vegetables in this dish I would recommend you prepare all the vegetables first before you start. The list of vegetables is what I had to hand and what was sent to me by Applewood Spreadable. By all means do your own fridge raid and add or substitute whatever vegetables you like. If you wish to bulk it out further I would suggest adding a tin of beans such as butter beans or cannellini; baked beans would also work. If you don't have fresh basil use dried basil or mixed herbs.

One note on the amount of potatoes used. My oven-proof dish is deep with a small surface area so if your dish is bigger you may need more potatoes in order to cover the top. Add some more Applewood Spreadable if necessary.

Serves: Generously serves 4 as an accompaniment or 2 as a main meal

Equipment: 1 large frying pan, 1 oven-proof dish


2 tbsp (30ml) Olive Oil
1 Carrot, diced
1 Parsnip, diced
1 Leek, chopped
1 Onion, chopped
1 Courgette, diced
1 Aubergine, diced
3oz (85g) Mushrooms, sliced
2 cloves Garlic, crushed
12oz (350g) Potatoes, diced
400g tin Chopped Tomatoes
2tbsp Tomato purée
Black pepper, to taste
Handful fresh basil leaves, torn
2 tbsp (30ml) Applewood Spreadable


1. Pre-heat oven to 180°C/Gas mark 4.
2. In a large frying pan heat the olive oil and start to sauté the carrot, parsnip, leek and onion.
3. When the onion starts to soften add the courgette, aubergine, mushrooms and garlic.
4. Put the potatoes onto boil while the vegetable mixture keeps cooking gently.
5. When the vegetables start to brown slightly add the chopped tomatoes, tomato purée, black pepper and basil.
6. Continue to cook until the potatoes are well-cooked and ready to mash.
7. Drain the potatoes and start to break down with a masher.
8. Add the Applewood Spreadable and stir into the mash.
9. Transfer the vegetable mixture to the oven-proof dish and the spread the mash on top of it.
10. Cook in the oven for 10 minutes or until the mash starts to brown.

I was sent the Applewood Spreadable and hamper for free. No payment was made for this post. Recipe, words and photographs are my own. Please note that Applewood Spreadable is not suitable for vegetarians but Applewood (hard) Cheese is.

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