They can, of course, be made in advance*, leaving you plenty of time on Christmas Day to prepare all of the other traditional Yuletide trimmings. I cheated slightly by using time-saving ready-prepared squash, sweet potato and pastry, which bumps the cost up, but you could prepare your own if you are on a budget. Although this recipe serves four, it can easily be adapted to serve one or two, by reducing the ingredients accordingly.
- 500g/1 lb, 2oz (prepared weight) butternut squash and sweet potato, diced into approx.1-2 cm cubes
- 1 small red onion, chopped
- 2-3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 mild, red chilli, de-seeded and sliced finely (optional)
- 1 sprig fresh sage, chopped, plus 4 leaves to top the pies
- 100g/4oz chopped Suma walnuts
- 50g/2oz dried Suma cranberries
- 100g/4oz English goat's cheese, sliced into 4 slices
- 300g/12oz ready made shortcrust pastry**
- 1 egg, beaten, to glaze (optional)
Drizzle the oil over the chopped squash and sweet potato and roast for 15 minutes.
Remove from the oven, turn and add the diced onion, chopped sage and chilli.
Cook for a further 15 minutes.
Check if the vegetables are tender and starting to brown. If not, return to the oven for a further 5-10 minutes.
Remove from the oven, mix in the chopped walnuts and cranberries and allow to cool.
Preheat the oven to 200C/190C Fan/Gas 6/400F
Once the roasted vegetables are cool, divide the pastry into 4 and roll out thinly on a floured board to roughly 18cm/7" circles.
Place ¼ of the vegetable mixture into the centre of each circle.
Top with a slice of cheese and a sage leaf.
Fold the edges of the pastry in, to form an open pie.
Brush with beaten egg to glaze (optional), or wrap in grease proof paper and chill until needed.
Place on a greased baking tray and bake for 20-25 minutes until golden brown.
Serve with all the usual Christmas trimmings.
*Can be made in advance and chilled or frozen until needed.
**Swap the shortcrust pastry for puff pastry if you prefer it.
Vegan option: Check that your pastry is vegan...most UK brands are. Omit the cheese, or swap for extra chopped nuts, pine nuts, or your preferred cheese substitute.
As a member of the Suma Blogger's Network, I will receive a selection of complimentary products from Suma every two months, to use in recipe development, and will blog an original recipe for the Network.