Saturday, 8 October 2011

Magical Loaf Studio

This is what I did with the chickpeas that I cooked from scratch in the last post: 

Many people think (and rightly so) that the nut roast or lentil loaf is the staple of a vegan diet. I used to enjoy buying one that came in a packet and all you did was add cold water and it was amazingly good. We had it for every Christmas since we arrived in the UK. However, since my hysterectomy I have had to give up gluten and the 5th ingredient in the packet nut roast is wheat rusk. *SOB* so clearly that is out for this year. But never fear, Vegan Lunch Box is here! This blog has something called the Magical Loaf Studio where you choose a protein, a nut or seed, a carb, some vegetables, a binder and some seasonings and click the button and PRESTO! It spits out a recipe. This is the one we ate last night. Chickpea Cashew Roast. This was hella good and tasted just like thanksgiving stuffing--but not the kind your Uncle makes with way too much sage--the good kind.

Here’s the link if you want to have a go yourself making one. It really is addictive and there are endless combinations. Have a go--you know you wanna.

Chickpea Cashew Roast
1/2 cup cashews
2 TB olive oil
One onion, diced
One large garlic clove, minced
One large carrot, peeled and grated
2 cups cooked garbanzo beans, partly mashed
1 cup uncooked quick oatmeal or oat bran
1/4 to 1/2 cup vegetable broth, as needed
1 heaping TB flaxseed meal
1/4 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried sage
2 TB nutritional yeast flakes
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 tsp. salt
Preheat the oven to 175C/350F. Spray a loaf pan or 8x8 square baking pan with nonstick spray and set aside (an 8x8 pan makes a crisper loaf).
Grind the cashews into a coarse meal using a food processor or spice/coffee grinder. Place in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
Sauté any vegetables you've chosen in the olive oil until soft. Add to the large mixing bowl along with all the remaining ingredients. Mix and mash together well, adding only as much liquid as needed to create a soft, moist loaf that holds together and is not runny (you may not need to add any liquid if the grains and protein are very moist). Add more binder/carbohydrate as needed if the loaf seems too wet.
Press mixture into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until cooked through.
Let the loaf cool in the pan for 10 to 15 minutes, then turn out onto a plate or platter and slice. Serve with potatoes, vegetables, and vegetarian gravy, if desired.
Cold leftover slices of make a great sandwich filling.

There were a few minor changes I made. I cut back on the oil.  I did half a carrot and half a red pepper because I felt like it. Instead of oatmeal I used millet flakes to make it totally gluten free.  I also cooked it in my pie pan and cooked it for 30 minutes at 190C/375F. This way I could cook broccoli as well. I cooked the Roast for 10 minutes, added the broccoli in a pan small enough to fit on the same oven rack as I only have one in my oven and cooked for a further 20. Check out that 20 minutes broccoli--all brown and crispy and yumilicious.

I served it with a drizzle of this recipe for Tahini Tamari Sauce (without the parsley but with added sriracha hot sauce for a bit of zing)

It was a little crumbly as I cut it after 10 minutes because I was an impatient greedy guts. But the second slice was much firmer. Plus we had half the roast left over and so lunch is sorted tomorrow!

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