Fennel & chestnut loaf with cranberry relish

Fennel & chestnut loaf with cranberry relish

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(5 ratings)


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Cooking time

Prep: 15 mins Cook: 1 hr

Skill level



Serves 2

Good Food reader Barbara Keen shares her vegetarian loaf recipe with seasonal chestnut and cranberry

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
  • Vegetarian
Nutrition info

Nutrition per serving

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  • 125g pack cooked chestnuts
  • 6 juniper berries, squashed
  • 1 tbsp sunflower oil, plus extra for greasing
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 140g fennel, chopped
  • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 tsp orange zest
  • 125ml orange juice
  • 50g wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 25g ground almonds
  • 50ml white wine
  • 1 egg, beaten

For the cranberry relish

  • 140g fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 65g granulated sugar
  • 1 orange, segmented

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  1. Place the chestnuts and berries in a small pan, pour over enough water to just cover. Bring to the boil then remove from the heat, cover and leave to infuse until cool. Once cool, drain chestnuts and discard berries. Meanwhile, heat the oil in a medium-size pan and fry the onion until soft. Add the fennel and cook for 3-4 mins.
  2. Heat oven to 180C/160C fan/gas 4. Grease a 1lb loaf tin with oil. Transfer mixture to a mixing bowl and stir in the chestnuts and remaining ingredients with some seasoning. Put into the tin, smooth the top a bit, and cook for 35-40 mins until light golden. Leave to cool for a few mins in the tin before removing.
  3. While it’s cooking make the cranberry relish. Place the cranberries in a small pan and pour over 150ml of water. Bring to the boil and cook until they’re soft. Reduce the heat and add the sugar. Simmer until the mixture has thickened. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Add the orange and serve with the loaf.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, January 2011

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Show comments
blodyn's picture
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sadly, this didn't work for me. After reading the comments, I used half the required liquid and this seemed to make it less wet but it completely fell apart when I tried to get it out of the tin. Perhaps lining the tin might have prevented this? It tasted okay but the parsnip loaf on this site is much taster in my opinion.

angelalambert's picture
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Similar to other comments it did fall apart and was a little wet. Better after reheating. Think there are better nut roasts around sorry to say.

bat_bren's picture
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Very tasty nut roast - even if you're not veggie....

Although after reading feedback before starting to cook, I only used the orange zest - which will still overpowering! Replaced the Juniper Berrys (as could not find them anywhere) with bay leaf and pink peppercorns to add some flavour.

Decided to cook the night before and chill before reheating slices in the microwave (also had some left to freeze)!

cookinggrannie's picture

This is best eaten cold. If the juniper berries are left in the flavour develops the next day. Best if leave the nuts chunky.

bearpadi's picture
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Cooked this for Christmas dinner yesterday - very yummy. Would fully recommend it. My husband thought the orange could have been a little less strong too but i liked it. The texture was a bit soft - we are recooking the half we didn't eat for todays meal and guess it will become firmer. We didn't have a loaf tin (must buy one!) so used a round cake tin which may have made it softer as the heat would be differently distributed when cooking. Missed sugar out of the sauce which worked fine - again my husband found it too orangey and segments too large but i liked it.

superkat's picture
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Chose this for yesterday's Christmas Dinner main course for my veggie mum, and it went down very well!
Decided to make and cook the loaf on Xmas Eve so I could just warm it through on the day. Was easy to prepare and not too time-consuming (using a food processor to chop everything!).
Looked very golden and appetising when it came out of the oven; for my tastes I thought the orange flavours could do with toning down, but the fennel gave a lovely aniseedy back flavour that came through nicely. Texture-wise the loaf seemed a bit less firm than the picture above.
Come Xmas lunch, I warmed the loaf through at the bottom of the oven while the spuds etc were cooking - this seemed to help firm up the texture without making it overdry.
Mum loved it (just as well - she's got the other half of the loaf for lunch today :)) and as my first attempt at using fennel and chestnuts I was impressed. Well worth a go!

grandmagrandad's picture

looks pretty good but never tried fennel before but certainly willing to give it a go maybe for new years day.