Make-ahead hearty hotpot
Make this hearty veg-packed hotpot for a vibrant centrepiece, or serve it as a side dish with sausages or pork chops, adding a good dollop of mustard on the side
- Serves: 4 persons
- 2tbsp olive oil
- 2onions, chopped
- 2carrots, chopped
- 150g chestnut mushrooms, quartered
- 1tbsp tomato purée
- 350g mixed root veg, peeled and chopped into 2cm pieces (we used parsnip, celeriac and swede)
- small bunch of thyme, leaves picked
- 100g pearl barley
- 1vegetable stock cube
- 2bay leaves
- 1tbsp soy sauce
- 2tsp Dijon mustard
- 1tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2medium potatoes, peeled
- 2beetroot, peeled
- 2medium sweet potatoes, peeled
- 25g butter
- 2tsp honey
Step 1Heat the oil in a wide, shallow ovenproof pan set over a medium heat. Cook the onions until starting to caramelise, about 10 mins. Tip in the carrots and mushrooms, and cook for another 5 mins until the mushrooms have softened a little. Stir in the tomato purée.
Step 2Tip in the root veg, half the thyme and all the pearl barley, and stir well. Crumble in the veg stock cube and add the bay, soy sauce, mustard and vinegar. Season and pour in 600ml water. Bring to a gentle simmer, cover with a lid and cook for 10 mins.
Step 3Meanwhile, prepare the veg for the topping. Slice the potatoes, beetroot and sweet potatoes as thinly as you can – use a mandoline if you have one. Beetroot will stain your hands, so use kitchen gloves, if you like. Melt the butter in a pan over a low heat and mix with the honey, remaining thyme and a grind of black pepper.
Step 4Remove the pan from the heat. Arrange the sliced vegetables on top of the dish in concentric circles, overlapping potato, sweet potato and beetroot slices until the whole dish is covered. Brush the butter and honey mixture over the top, making sure every slice is covered. Season well with salt. Will keep chilled overnight or wrapped and frozen for up to three months. Leave to cool completely first. Defrost overnight before continuing with step five.
Step 5Heat the oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Cover the pan with a lid or piece of foil and bake for 20 mins. Uncover the dish and cook for a further 30 mins until the topping is crispy and the potatoes are golden.