“I’ve got an increasing number of friends that are either vegetarian or vegan. so I decided I’d better perfect a vegetarian “Sausage” roll. As I plan to open a cafe in the future I thought it would be a good addition to the menu. I’ve found that other veggie rolls I’ve had have been a bit bland and lacking in texture so I’ve added pumpkin seeds and a few other ingredients to give them a culinary kick. The filling contains no animal products so vegans can make them simply by substituting vegan pastry for the puff pastry I’ve used. I’ve also used the filling as a veggie burger patty by rolling in bread crumbs and shallow frying. Enjoy!”
1 large onion, diced
4 cloves of garlic, diced
150g mushrooms, diced
2 tbsp fennel seeds
1 carrot, grated
1 zucchini, grated
75g sun-dried tomatoes
100g bread crumbs
400g can of chick peas, drained and lightly smashed
400g sweet potato, roasted or grated
100g pumpkin seeds
Salt and pepper
4 sheets of puff pastry or vegan pastry
Egg-wash or almond milk to brush on pastry
Place the whole unpeeled sweet potato on a tray and bake at 180 degrees C for 40 minutes or until it is soft all the way through. Let it cool then blitz in a food processor until smooth. (You can also just grate the sweet potato and add to the mixture, but I prefer the baked version)
Fry the diced onion, garlic, mushroom and fennel seeds until onion is translucent. Set aside to cool.
In a food processor, blitz the sun-dried tomatoes and olives.
Combine the grated carrot, zucchini, bread crumbs, smashed chick peas and pumpkin seeds. Add in the tomatoes and olives, the garlic and onion mixture and the pureed sweet potato. Stir the mixture well to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then refrigerate for at least an hour.
Lay out 4 sheets of puff pastry or vegan pastry and distribute a log of the cooled filling down the middle of each.
Wrap the pastry around the filling and place seam side down on a baking tray.
Brush with egg-wash or almond milk and sprinkle with poppy seeds.
Bake at 180 degrees C for 30-45 minutes or until the pastry has cooked and browned.
Let the rolls cool slightly before slicing into segments and serve with a sauce or chutney.
“After a weekend of catering three different events with three completely different and rather complicated menus I thought it would be good to post my favourite simple stand-by recipe. I came up with this recipe years ago when I started making hummus from scratch (when I realised it’s so much better than the store-bought varieties!). I needed a dish that I could prepare in the morning and throw into the oven when I got home. It’s also really easy to modify by substituting different vegetables such and capsicum or eggplant. I sometimes do it in small ramekins for a more formal occasion but usually I just bring it to the table in the baking dish and let everyone dig in! It may not look pretty but the flavours are sensational! Enjoy!”
2 x 400g tins of chick peas
4 garlic cloves
6 tbsp tahini paste
Juice of 2 lemons
Rind of 1 lemon
3 tsp cumin seeds
1 cup light olive oil
Salt and pepper
Heat a small fry pan and add cumin seeds, stirring until they become fragrant. Grind with a mortar and pestle until reduced to a powder.
Add all ingredients to a food processor and blitz until smooth. Add a small amount of water if it’s too thick and season to taste.
Hummus chicken ingredients
2 medium potatoes
1 red onion
6 medium mushrooms
1 quantity of hummus
850g chicken thighs
Salt and pepper
Prepare all your ingredients. Finely slice potatoes (I use a mandolin on the thinnest setting). Slice onion into rings. Slice mushrooms. Slice zucchini lengthwise into 4mm strips. Cut chicken thighs into quarters.
Grease a baking dish and put a layer of potato and red onion at the bottom.
Follow this with a layer of mushrooms and cover with the zucchini.
Spread some of the hummus (about a cup) over the zucchini in an even layer.
Spread the chicken on top and cover with another layer of hummus.
Finish with a layer of potato, season with salt and pepper and some Parmesan cheese.
Bake in the oven at 200 degrees c for 45-60 minutes or until the chicken is cooked and the topping is golden.
Serve with a green salad, crusty bread to soak up the sauce and vegetables.
Hello, my name is Craig.
Craig Allister Young is a cellist, orchestrator, arranger, singer and song-writer who works with the QLD Symphony Orchestra in Brisbane.
Over the past 20 years he has orchestrated music for most of the major orchestras in Australia, composed music for the Sydney 2000 Olympics,
toured a cabaret ensemble around QLD and for the past three years has been a musical director and cellist for the QLD ballet. His passion for cooking
saw him embark on his latest adventure as a top 24 contestant in the hugely popular TV sensation Australian Masterchef 2011. It is from this that the idea of
"Musical Menus" materialised as a way of combining his love for music with his passion for creating imaginative culinary dishes. Bon Appetite!