Four festive vegan recipes for a plant-based Christmas

Add a plant-based twist to your celebrations with chocolate truffles.
Add a plant-based twist to your celebrations with chocolate truffles. Photo: Audrey Fitzjohn/Smith Street Books

If there's a trend that's captured Christmas in recent years, it's plant-based cooking.

Over the past five years, vegan recipes have come in as the third and fourth most popular online food search terms at Christmas time, figures from Google Trends show.

So join the trend and add a plant-based twist to your celebrations with these four simple meat-free recipes from Paris-based author and photographer Audrey Fitzjohn's new cookbook Vegan Christmas

Audrey Fitzjohn's new cookbook.
Audrey Fitzjohn's new cookbook. Photo: Smith Street Books

Chocolate truffles

INGREDIENTS

  • 150g vegan dark chocolate
  • 150ml coconut milk
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 100g almond spread

Coating and decorations

  • 150g vegan dark chocolate
  • 1 tablespoon crushed pistachios
  • 1 tablespoon goji berries
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 tablespoon crushed cacao beans
  • 2 tablespoons crushed hazelnuts

METHOD

  1. Melt the chocolate in a bain-marie.
  2. In a saucepan, heat the coconut milk and salt over medium heat. Slowly add the hot milk to the melted chocolate and stir until the mixture is smooth and shiny. Remove from the heat and whisk in the maple syrup and almond spread. Place the mixture in the fridge to set overnight.
  3. Using a teaspoon, scoop the truffle dough into 12 mounds, then roll each mound into a ball.
  4. For the coating, melt the chocolate in a bain-marie. Spear one truffle with a toothpick and dip in the melted chocolate. Decorate immediately with your choice of topping, then repeat with the remaining truffles.
  5. Set aside in the fridge until ready to serve.
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Makes 12

Festive fir
Vegetable pies
Sweet potato and green beans in miso sauce
Chocolate truffles
This is an edited extract from Vegan Christmas by Audrey Fitzjohn, published by Smith Street Books, RRP $29.99. Photography by Audrey Fitzjohn. 
Single use

Golden plant-based pies for the festive season. Photo: Audrey Fitzjohn/Smith Street Books

Vegetable pies

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for brushing
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 4 celery stalks, finely sliced
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2 teaspoons herbes de Provence
  • 40g plain flour
  • 750ml (3 cups) vegetable stock
  • salt and pepper
  • 150g frozen peas
  • 6 baby (chat) potatoes, thinly sliced
  • snipped chives, to serve

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 200C fan-forced (220C conventional).
  2. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat, add the onion, carrot, celery, garlic and herbes de Provence and saute for 8 minutes. Add the flour and stir for 1 minute or until the vegetables are coated. Pour the stock over the vegetables, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil and simmer for 5 minutes. Stir through the peas, then remove from the heat.
  3. Divide the vegetable mixture among six ramekins, then top with the potato, overlapping the slices as you go. Brush the potato with olive oil, then transfer the pies to the oven and bake for 30-40 minutes, until golden brown. Garnish with snipped chives and serve.

Serves 6

Festive fir
Vegetable pies
Sweet potato and green beans in miso sauce
Chocolate truffles
This is an edited extract from Vegan Christmas by Audrey Fitzjohn, published by Smith Street Books, RRP $29.99. Photography by Audrey Fitzjohn. 
Single use

Drizzle with the miso sauce and serve. Photo: Audrey Fitzjohn/Smith Street Books

Sweet potato and green beans in miso sauce

INGREDIENTS

  • 500g sweet potato, peeled and cut into wedges
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • salt
  • 250g green beans, trimmed
  • 70g pine nuts

Miso sauce

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon white miso
  • 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
  • salt and pepper

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 220C fan-forced (240C conventional). 
  2. Place the sweet potato in a baking dish and drizzle over 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Season with salt, then roast for 30 minutes or until golden and cooked through.
  3. For the miso sauce, combine the olive oil, miso and mustard in a bowl and season with salt and pepper. Set aside.
  4. Heat the remaining oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the green beans and saute, tossing frequently, for 4 minutes. Add the pine nuts and cook for a further minute.
  5. Arrange the green beans and pine nuts, and the sweet potato in a serving dish. Drizzle with the miso sauce and serve.

Serves 6

Festive fir

INGREDIENTS

  • 225g pitted green olives
  • 30g capers, drained and rinsed
  • 60g artichoke hearts, drained
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • juice of ½ lemon
  • handful of basil leaves
  • 2 sheets vegan puff pastry
  • 2 tablespoons soy milk

METHOD

  1. Preheat the oven to 180C fan-forced (200C conventional).
  2. Place the olives, capers, artichoke hearts, garlic cloves, lemon juice and basil in a food processor and blend to a fine paste.
  3. Spread the olive paste in the shape of a fir tree on one sheet of puff pastry, then place the second sheet on top. Cut out the same tree outline from the pastry. To do this, starting on one side, make horizontal cuts, about 1.5cm from the centre to the outer edges of the pastry, each cut about 1cm apart. Repeat on the other side. Twist each strip 180 degrees, then brush the pastry with soy milk. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown.

Serves 6

This is an edited extract from Vegan Christmas by Audrey Fitzjohn, published by Smith Street Books, RRP $29.99. Photography by Audrey Fitzjohn. Buy now