Origins of ‘Wellington’
With a little imagination, many traditional meat dishes can have vegetarian versions which are every bit as tasty – if not more so – than the original. Lentil recipes often make a good alternative to many meat dishes and this Lentil Wellington recipe is no exception.
It really appealed to me as an easy to cook, simple and low cost version of the rather extravagant beef version. Of course the name of the original recipe soon had me looking up where it originated from – both the idea and the name. Expecting to find it was named after the Duke of Wellington, I was diasappointed to find there is no real evidence to suggest that this is the case. In fact it did not appear in any cookery books until the 1960s.
This vegetarian lentil recipe is a great alternative to a meat roast dinner for the family or for guests
Although it appears the Duke was fond of beef there is no record that he ate this dish. It may have just been a made up as a British name for the french filet de beouf en croute. Read more about the various theories here.
Lentil Wellington – Perfect For Vegetarians
This dish is of course ideal for vegetarians, and could be served as a vegetarian option for a roast dinner, maybe even alongside a beef wellington! It is baked in the oven so fits well alongside roast potatoes and will be excellent with your favourite green vegetables. This particular recipe comes from the ‘Family Cookbook’ put together by families from the Exeter Steiner School. Many people contributed their favourite recipes so the book is a wonderful compilation of the tried and tested! You can purchase a copy for £2.50. Just email Diane Moore for details at email@example.com . Because many of the recipes are simple and low cost, I have permission to reproduce them on Penny’s Recipes
Rather than making the puff pastry, it does use ready made, obtainable of course from most supermarkets. The frozen is usually lower cost than the chilled, if you have the time to defrost it before use. The Wellington can be made in advance – always appealing when you are having friends round for dinner. Its so much better to spend the time chatting with your friends, rather than cooking!
The onions are fried and caramelised, making the filling really tasty with a sweetness.
Onion And Lentil Wellington
- 150g / 5oz red lentils
- 400ml /14 floz water
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 medium onions, peeled and sliced
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1/2 large lemon finely grated zest and juice
- 1 tablespoon rosemary, chopped
- 375g pack pre-rolled ready made puff pastry
- 1 egg beaten
- Put the lentils and water in a small pan
- Bring to the boil, stir and simmer until soft, stirring frequently – (Add more water if they get too dry but the mixture needs to be thick)
- Add a little salt and leave to cool, then chill in the fridge
- Fry the onions in the olive oil until they start to brown
- Add the sugar and cook until caramalised
- Preheat the oven to 220 degrees C
- Stir the onions through the lentils
- Add the lemon zest and juice
- Add the rosemary and and some black pepper
- The mixture can be chilled for up to 48 hours now if you are preparing in advance
- Lay the pastry falt on a greased baking sheet
- Spoon the lentil mixture into the middle in a fat sausage shape, leaving a border at each end
- Wrap the pastry around the filling and press the edges together
- Seal the ends of the Wellington
- Brush the whole thing with a beaten egg
- Score diagonally with a sharp knife several times
- Bake for 20-25 minutes or until deep golden brown and puffed all over
- Cool for a few minutes before slicing
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