Preheat oven to 375˚F. Line a small baking dish with parchment paper. Prick yam a few times with a fork. Set in the dish and bake 60 to 70 minutes, or until tender. Cool yam to room temperature, and then carefully peel. Slice yam, widthwise, into 1/4” thick rounds, set on a plate and refrigerate until needed.
Place rice and water in a small pot and bring to a boil over high heat. Cover rice, reduce heat to its lowest setting, and cook, undisturbed, 35 minutes, or until tender. Spoon rice into a mixing bowl and cool to room temperature.
Place oil in large skillet set over medium, medium-high heat. Add onions and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and garlic. Cook until mushroom are very tender and moisture in them has evaporated. Remove pan from heat, cool mushrooms to room temperature and then add to the rice.
Pour 1/2-inch of water into a large pot and bring to a boil. Add spinach and cook and stir until it just wilts, about 3 minutes. Set a strainer in the sink and pour and drain spinach in it. Rinse spinach with cold water to cool. Firmly press the spinach and squeeze out as much water as you can.
Finely chop spinach and add it to rice and mushrooms. Mix in eggs, cornstarch, sage, zest, cumin, salt, pepper and almonds.
On a lightly floured surface, roll pastry into a rectangle about 16” long, and 12” to 14” wide. Place half the rice mixture in the centre of the pastry, making a 3 1/2” wide, lengthwise row of it. Leave 2” of clean pastry on either end of that row of rice.
Top rice with two slightly overlapping, if needed, rows of sliced yams. Top the yams with the crumbled goat cheese. Now top the yams and cheese with remaining rice. Use your hands to press on the rice and compact a little.
Brush edges of pastry with egg wash. Fold over the clean sides of the pastry. Now fold pastry over rice filling and completely seal.
Place wellington seam-side down on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Brush top all over with egg wash. Set pan in the refrigerator and chill pastry 30 minutes (the chilling will cause the pastry to puff better; see Note).
Preheat oven to a 350˚F. Bake wellington in the middle of oven 35 to 40 minutes, until puffed and golden and filling is set. Let rest 10 to 15 minutes before slicing into portions with a serrated knife. Serve with vegetarian gravy or tzatziki, for spooning alongside or on the wellington. You’ll find a
recipe for the gravy here. Tzatziki is sold in our Deli Department.
You can prepare unbaked Wellington up to six hours before needed. Keep refrigerated until ready to bake. If you would like to decorate wellington with leaves of puff pastry, before rolling out the dough, cut off a small, 1/2” strip of it. Thinly roll that piece of dough, cut into small leaf shapes, bake until puffed and golden, and use to decorate top of wellington when it’s cooked. Note:
Recipe Options: For even more flavour, use aromatic long grain basmati brown rice in this recipe. Use 1/3 cup walnut or pecan halves, coarsely chopped, instead of the almonds. VIDEO