Roasts are among the most popular of vegetarian dishes. In the home, in sanitariums and in our vegetarian restaurants they are always in demand. Except soups there are no dishes that we are so often asked to give the recipes for as our roasts. We always plan to have left-overs that will be good for them, as the proper combination of different ingredients is very satisfying, and richer flavors are often developed by reheating foods.
When we start to make a roast, we gather up the suitable ingredients: for instance, a few baked beans or mashed lentils, a little cold boiled rice, some tomato macaroni, a nut cutlet or two, perhaps one or two croquettes, a spoonful or so of tomato, some boiled onions, a few peas or string beans or baked peanuts, may be a little corn, and the vegetables strained out of a soup from the day before; throwing them one after another into a pan. Then we often add a handful of nut meats, chopped or whole, a little sage, sometimes sliced celery or chopped onion, occasionally a little browned flour; never potatoes unless an infinitesimal quantity. Then we scatter over some coarse bread or zwieback crumbs or granella and pour on consommé, broth or gravy, some soup we happen to have, or water, and add one or more beaten eggs, according to the number and size of the loaves; just enough to hold the ingredients together. The eggs may be omitted, but we are more sure that the roast will turn out of the tin well without being too solid, by using them; then, too, they add to the nutritive value of the roast.
Mix well, but not to pastiness, adding more crumbs or liquid as required to make a rather soft mixture. Allowance must be made for the swelling of the crumbs, if they are very dry, and the thickening of the eggs. More salt may be necessary but not much if the foods were seasoned before. The roast should not be as salt as the gravy that is to be served with it.
When of the desired consistency put the mixture into well oiled molds or brick shaped tins, taking care that the corners are well filled. Brush the tops with oil or melted butter or pour a little thin cream over. Bake in a moderate oven in a dripping pan or covered baker without water until the roast is well heated through and the eggs set, then pour boiling water into the baker, cover and bake for an hour or so longer. Remove from oven, let stand a few minutes, invert on platter, lifting mold carefully, garnish, and send to table with a suitable sauce. Some of the meaty flavored sauces are most appropriate. The pieces of nut meat in the roast add much to the pleasure of masticating it. Roasts may be warmed over by setting in pan of hot water in the oven.
Cut cold roast into not too thin slices. Egg and crumb, or flour only. Bake or broil and serve with or without a sauce. Some such accompaniment as stewed onions or carrots is enjoyable. Cutlets may be served on a bed of pilau.
Below are given the ingredients of a few roasts that were made in a small institution at different times.
Some macaroni strained out of the soup from the day before, a little nutmese à la crême, some trumese cutlets, hard boiled eggs, a little nutmese, sage, crumbs, eggs, consommé. The nutmese was put in the center of the loaf in a layer.
Stewed red kidney beans ground, egg macaroni ground, dry zwieback ground, a few nuts, eggs, consomme, nutmese in layers. Served with Sauce Imperial.
Baked peanuts, rice, garlic, a little melted butter, savory tomato gravy (made with tomato, Chili sauce, bay leaf and a little cream) a very little sage, eggs, crumbs, soup.
5 cups medium dry bread crumbs 2 cups coarse chopped black walnut meats
1 1/2 teaspn. sage or winter savory 1 1/2 teaspn. salt 2 1/2cups hot water