Vegetarians and carnivores will unite over this loaf. Cranberries provide an unexpected pop of sweetness, while cooking the lentils in broth instead of water adds another layer of flavour. Liquid smoke, a condensed smoke in water and not an artificial flavour, is a way to infuse meat-free loaves with hot-off-the-grill smoky flavour.
To make it vegan, replace eggs with 2 Tbsp (30 mL) ground flax or ground chia mixed with 6 Tbsp (90 mL) water. Let mixture stand for 15 minutes before mixing into loaf batter. Try topping with Chili BBQ Sauce (see sidebar) or your favourite store-bought version.
1 cup (250 mL) green or brown lentils
3 cups (750 mL) low-sodium vegetable broth
2 tsp (10 mL) grapeseed oil or camelina oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
8 oz (225 g) cremini mushrooms, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup (250 mL) rolled oats
2 large free-range eggs
2 Tbsp (30 mL) unsalted tomato paste
2 tsp (10 mL) dried thyme
1 tsp (5 mL) ground cumin
1/2 tsp (2 mL) salt
1/4 tsp (1 mL) black pepper
1/2 tsp (2 mL) liquid smoke (optional)
1 cup (250 mL) grated carrot
1/2 cup (125 mL) chopped walnuts
1/2 cup (125 mL) dried cranberries
Rinse lentils and then combine them with vegetable broth in medium-sized saucepan over high heat. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer for about 30 minutes, or until tender. Drain any excess liquid and set aside.
Preheat oven to 350 F (180 C) and grease 9 x 5 in (23 x 13 cm) loaf pan.
Heat oil in large skillet over medium heat. Add onion and heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and garlic; heat until mushrooms have softened.
Place oats in food processor container and pulverize into coarse powder. Blend in 2 cups (500 mL) cooked lentils, eggs, tomato paste, thyme, cumin, salt, pepper, and liquid smoke (if using) into a coarse mixture. Place in large bowl and stir in remaining lentils, onion mixture, carrot, walnuts, cranberries, and mushrooms.
Place mixture in loaf pan and press down firmly into an even layer. Bake for 40 minutes, or until set in the middle and darkened around the edges. Let cool for several minutes before slicing.
Each serving contains: 328 calories; 15 g protein; 11 g total fat (2 g sat. fat, 0 g trans fat); 44 g total carbohydrates (11 g sugars, 7 g fibre); 265 mg sodium
Top it Off
Chili BBQ Sauce
Soak 1 dried ancho chili pepper in hot water for15 minutes. Slice off stem, discard most of the seeds, and blend with 1/2 cup (125 mL) tomato sauce, 1 Tbsp (15 mL) tomato paste, 2 shallots, 2 garlic cloves, 2 Tbsp (30 mL) cider vinegar, 1 Tbsp (15 mL) molasses, 1 Tbsp (15 mL) Worcestershire sauce (vegan if desired), 1/2 tsp (2 mL) cumin, 1/2 tsp (2 mL) ground allspice, and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) each salt and black pepper until smooth. Brush some on top of loaf before cooking and serve additional sauce with loaf slices.
source: "Loafing Around", alive #389, March 2015
In this enchilada riff, we stuff everything into a roasted poblano pepper shell, rather than tortillas, to pack an extra veggie serving into your meal and trim the starchy calories. If you can’t find poblanos, which are mild, dark green Mexican peppers, you can substitute green bell peppers. Flour power Made from nixtamalized corn (corn soaked in limewater), masa harina flour adds a touch of corny flavour to enchilada stuffing or a pot of chili.
These crab-stuffed portobello mushrooms can do double duty as a fancy starter for a casual dinner party or a light main course on any given night. Meaty and umami-rich portobellos serve as a holder for a light-tasting seafood salad. Gills begone Even though the gills of mushrooms are edible, they will darken and discolour everything they touch. Besides, after you scrape out the gills, you’ll have more room for stuffing. And don’t discard the stems; they can be saved and used when making veggie stock.
Serving saucy lentils in squash halves is a sure-fire way to elevate your plant-based menu. And, yes, the whole bowl is edible, skin and all. If desired, you can add dollops of Greek yogurt or sour cream. Spice of life Garam masala, a blend of spices traditionally used in Indian cooking, usually includes cardamom, black pepper, cloves, nutmeg, fennel, cumin, and coriander. It’s great on roasted meats and vegetables.
“Germans do potatoes in general very well,” says Canadian expat Chris Gilles, who now lives in Munich and has celebrated many an Oktoberfest there. “Knödel seem kind of rubbery. You don’t really think it’s potato when you first see it, but it’s tasty.” But he might be surprised to find that this alive -inspired version of Bavarian potato dumplings is made with a combination of potato and cauliflower, because as anyone who’s eaten cauliflower gnocchi knows, the low-carb vegetable is a great way to lighten up starch-heavy foods (and Biergarten menus). Happy Knödelfest! The original version of these snacks are so popular that it even gets its own food fest: Knödelfest, which happens in September in Austria, about a 1 1/2-hour drive from Munich. If alive threw a Knödelfest, these dumplings would definitely be on the menu, served simply as snacks with sliced radishes and fresh parsley or dill, or topped with butter, beer gravy, or mushroom sauce. The dumpling test You can test one dumpling by shaping it and then boiling it before shaping the rest. If the water is lower than a boil and it still falls apart, add more starch to the batter before shaping another ball and testing again.