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Archive for the ‘Sandwich’ Category

There is a reason that street foods are eternal and craved relentlessly; they’re just damned good.  When you load your diet with legumes, you’re always after new ways to be creative with them.  In my opinion, the queen bean is without a doubt the garbanzo.  Call it ceci, chickpea or Bengal gram, it’s still the reigning sovereign of many vegan’s diets and a favorite of omnivores the world over. 

Here I celebrate and pay homage to panelle, a Sicilian street eat that is traditionally served as a simple sandwich filling on a bun.  One of the reasons that I love panelle so much is because, when pan-fried and warm,  it has that contrasting textural thing going on with the crispy edges and a velvety soft interior.  It is, hands down, a great sandwich.

Panelle [Chickpea Polenta]

Ingredients:

1 ½ cups garbanzo bean flour

2 cups vegetable broth

2 tsp dried oregano

Pinch of salt

Freshly-cracked black pepper

Olive oil

Directions:

Slowly add broth to the flour while whisking to avoid lumps.  Add in the oregano, salt and pepper.  Cook for 10-15 minutes over medium heat, stirring the entire time.   (It does not need to boil and shall spit molten chickpea lava at you if you do let it boil, so be careful.)  It is going to be very thick once finished but you want it to have that consistency because you want a substantial texture for a sandwich filling.

Transfer panelle to a non-stick pan and tamp down with a spatula. (I used a loaf pan sprayed with olive oil.)  Place into the refrigerator until chilled solid.  Invert onto a cutting board and slice into 1/2 inch thick slices.  You can either pan fry in oil (as is traditional) to crisp it up or do as I did and simply give a quick spray of olive oil to each slice and place in a pan until the sides are golden.

As always, my predilection for the savory-sweet combination shines through here.  I like to add a nice slather of apricot jam to my panelle sandwich, though it’s entirely up to you how you wish to assemble your own masterpiece.

 

[This slightly-modified post/recipe was originally published at VelvetPark last year.  I wanted it here, on my personal blog, because it is one of my favorites and I felt it was important to include it here in my collection/index.]

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Making faux tuna using garbanzo beans isn’t an idea original to me;  I simply modified the idea to mimic how I used to make the real deal.   It’s quick, easy and can be made nearly on the fly.  It also happens to be delicious and full of healthy and filling fiber.  Plus,  the vitamin C-rich red bell pepper helps your body absorb the iron found within the garbanzo beans more readily.  It’s an all ’round rock star of a sandwich filler.

 

Faux Tuna Salad

Ingredients:

2 cups garbanzo beans

¼ cup celery, small dice

¼ cup red bell pepper, small dice

¼ cup apple, small dice

¼ cup dill pickle, small dice

¼ cup fresh dill, minced

¼ – ⅓ cup  plain non-dairy yogurt [So Delicious Plain is my choice] or Vegenaise  [The amount depends upon how wet you like your salad]

freshly-cracked black pepper

sea salt

Directions:

Using a potato masher, mash the garbanzo beans in a large bowl.  You could use a food processor for this, just be careful not to over-process the beans.  You do not want a purée, but rather a coarse mash with texture.

Add the remaining ingredients to the mashed beans and season with salt and pepper to taste.

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Raw food, how I am growing to adore you…You are beautiful to look upon and grace my meals with vitality and health. 

 

Raw Falafel

Ingredients:

2 cups sprouted legumes [I used a combination of garbanzo beans and lentils]

1 cup freshly chopped parsley

3 cloves garlic, minced

Juice and zest of ½ lemon

½ cup raw walnuts

¼ cup chopped shallot

¼ cup raw tahini [What a wonderful flavor this has!  It reminds me of an unsweetened halva, something regular tahini has never hinted at to me]

1½ tsp ground cumin

1½ tsp ground coriander

1 tsp turmeric

crushed red pepper flakes [I used about ¼ tsp for a little zip, add more if you like it spicier]

sea salt

freshly cracked black pepper

Directions:

Place all ingredients into a food processor and pulse until well combined.  Season to taste with salt and pepper.

I used raw organic collard green leaves as wrappers for the falafel and rolled them with a slice of tomato and cucumber.  I served this with some dilled raw tzatziki sauce.

 

Raw Dilled Tzatziki Sauce

I purposefully made this sauce on the thin side because I wanted it more as a dipping sauce rather than a dip.  If you want a thicker sauce, use ½ cup cashews.

Ingredients:

⅓ cup raw cashews, soaked for 2 hours

¼ cup water

Juice of ½ lemon

1 -2 cloves garlic, depending upon how garlicky you like it

2 T fresh dill, divided

¼- ½ cup cucumber, deseeded and diced

Sea salt

Freshly-cracked black pepper

Directions:

Place the cashews, lemon juice, 1 T dill and one clove of garlic in a blender and pulse until combined.  Slowly add the water until you reach a pourable consistency.  Season to taste with salt and pepper, and if you wish more garlic flavor, add the second clove.   Blitz again until the sauce is smooth.  Pour into a container and add the remaining dill and cucumber.

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Judy, a dear friend of ours, recently gifted us with a sackful of fresh morel mushrooms that her son had harvested from the forest, as well as an arm-load of freshly-harvested garlic from her garden.  Faced with the combination of morels and garlic, and deciding to splurge and make something on the more decadent side of life, I opted for Po’Boys.  H wanted her sandwich on a traditional soft hoagie bun [pictured above], whereas I opted for a whole grain bun [pictured below].  Either way, these little gems resting atop a very garlicky sauce were so good!  Thank you Judy for your kindness, we enjoyed the treat thoroughly.

We added the traditional slices of heirloom tomatoes and butter lettuce to the sandwiches to round them out.

Pan-Fried Morels

Ingredients:

4-5 large Morels per sandwich

1/4 cup brown rice flour

1 T ground flax seed

1 cup water

1 cup Panko bread crumbs

Salt-Free Cajun Seasoning

Directions:

Combine the flax seed with the water in a blender and pulse until foamy.  Pour into a bowl.

Add brown rice flour to a bowl and mix in 0.5 tsp cajun seasoning.

Add panko bread crumbs and 1 T cajun seasoning to a bowl, mix well.

These morels were large in size so I quartered them, otherwise if yours are of a smaller size, I’d halve them.  Toss them lightly in some brown rice flour, shaking off the excess and then dredge them in the flax wash.  Allow excess flax wash to drip off before coating  them with the seasoned panko bread crumbs.   Place into a pan of hot oil.  Cook until browned on both sides.  Salt lightly after transfering to a paper towel-lined plate.

Garlicky Tofu and Olive Oil Aioli

This Aioli is less caloric than the standard.  I used tofu to eliminate a great deal of the fat.

Ingredients:

1/2 block extra firm silken tofu

1/3 cup olive oil

5 garlic cloves [This makes it very garlicky; add less if you would prefer.]

non-dairy milk

juice of 1/2 lemon

1.5 tsp Dijon mustard

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper

Directions:

Add the tofu, olive oil, garlic, mustard and lemon juice to a blender.  Pulse until well combined.  Add the non-dairy milk until you acheive the consistency you wish.  Season with salt and pepper.

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Lentil and Brown Rice Wrap

Ingredients:

Whole wheat tortillas [Our favorite is Trader Joe’s Organic brand]

1 zucchini, sliced lengthwise

1 yellow squash, sliced lengthwise

1 red bell pepper, sliced

olive oil

puy lentils, cooked in vegetable broth

short-grained brown rice, cooked in vegetable broth

green leafies [I used mâche]

squeeze of fresh lemon juice

sea salt

freshly-cracked black pepper

Directions:

Lightly brush or spray the sliced squash and pepper with olive oil and grill in a grill pan. 

Place the green leafies in a bowl and toss with a bit of olive oil, lemon juice.  Season with salt and pepper.

Mix the rice and lentils together in equal proportion.  Place a few spoonfuls upon a warmed whole wheat tortilla.  Top with the grilled vegetables and some of the seasoned green leafies.   Wrap up and eat!

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Cherries, especially the tart variety,  are receiving a great deal of attention these days in the athletic world due to their ability to mitigate pain after exercise.  This little fruit is packed full of anti-inflammatory anthocyanins as well as the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin which are important to the health of your vision. They are also, interestingly enough,  a good source of the calming antioxidant, melatonin.

I use a great deal of fruit and vegetable juices in my cooking to impart both flavor and nutrients to our food, so when Cheribundi approached us and asked if we’d try out their cherry juice, we eagerly agreed.  This sauce, coupled with the yuba, was savory and sweet, tangy and lip-smacking good.   In short, it had umami.   The slaw, absolutely necessary for any mustardy Carolina-style barbecue-sauced dish, was the perfect fresh and raw accompaniment. 

 

Pulled Yuba in a Cherry Barbecue Sauce with Sesame Slaw

Ingredients:

1 cup tart cherry juice [I used Cheribundi’s Tru Cherry juice.]

½ cup dried sour cherries

¼ cup yellow mustard

¼ cup Dijon mustard

½ cup balsamic vinegar

¼ cup dark brown sugar

3 T tomato paste

1 T Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp chili garlic sauce

1 tsp freshly-cracked black pepper

6 oz dried bean curd sheets [1 package]

Peanut oil

Directions:

Add a drizzle of peanut oil to a pan and heat over medium.  Add the tomato paste and spread around the pan to caramelize and rid the paste of the tinned flavor.  Add the remaining ingredients, except the yuba and dried cherries, and bring to a low simmer.  Cook for at least 15 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.

While the sauce is simmering, soak the sheets of yuba in hot tap water to hydrate.  Once pliable, drain and roll into a tight bundle.  Cut into small shreds across the roll. 

Add the shredded yuba and dried cherries to the sauce.  Mix well to incorporate and set aside to marinate.  The longer you leave it, the more flavor the yuba will absorb.  To serve, simply return to the heat and warm through.  I served this sandwich-style on a toasted ciabatta bun.

 

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Sesame Slaw

Ingredients:

snow pea pods, julienned

red bell pepper, julienned

apple, julienned

golden beet, shaved with a vegetable peeler

tahini

fresh lemon juice and zest

dark sesame oil

black sesame seeds

Directions:

I did not include amounts because it depends upon how much you wish to make.  I simply added equal portions of each fruit and vegetable ingredient and then used a 2:1 ratio of tahini to lemon juice as the dressing with a few drops of dark sesame oil added.  Season with sea salt and freshly-cracked black pepper.  Garnish with sesame seeds.

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The other day H decided that she was going to make some soft pretzels [I believe she used Colleen Patrick-Goudreau’s recipe].  They turned out really well and, as it also turns out, they freeze beautifully.  Now, knowing that there were frozen soft pretzels lurking in the freezer, and having the urge to make a new variant of tofu, I decided to fashion a meal out of the two items.  The only thing that remained unresolved was what flavors to infuse the tofu with; a combination of agave, mustard, orange zest and chili sauce grabbed hold of my mind and pulled me into it’s undertow.  Sweet and mustardy with a kick of heat turned this idea into an amazing dinner.

The glaze would also work really well baked onto store-bought tofu.  It would jazz it up and make it a great addition to any spicy dish.

 

Agave,  Mustard and Chili Tofu

Ingredients:

freshly made tofu,  ready to be pressed

½ cup agave syrup

2 T yellow mustard

1 T stone-ground mustard

1 tsp chili garlic sauce

zest of 1 orange

pinch of salt

Directions:

Drain the tofu curds and let cool.

While the tofu is cooling, heat the agave, mustards, chili garlic sauce, salt and orange zest in a sauce pan and bring to a gentle simmer for 15 minutes.  Turn off the heat and let cool.

Once cooled, transfer the tofu curd to a large bowl and mix in ½ of the agave and mustard sauce.  Mix well, but gently.  Transfer the infused tofu to a mold and press for 30 minutes to an hour.

Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.  Reserve the remainder of the sauce for use as a glaze.

Preheat oven to 350°.

When you are ready to serve, cut the tofu into slices* and place upon a silpat on a baking sheet [or other non-stick, oven-safe surface].  Spoon ½ of the remaining glaze atop the slices and bake for 20-30 minutes.  Add the remainder of the glaze and repeat.  Baking the tofu will firm up the texture and the glaze will become thick and sticky. 

*I grilled the tofu prior to glazing and baking it in order to give it grill marks and to give the outside layer a chewier texture.

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