The trick to these plant-based sausages is rolling them in rice paper wrappers before steaming and grilling them. The rice paper creates a translucent coating similar to sausage casing, but without pork. These are best served with grainy German mustard (preferably stone-ground) and sauerkraut (look for unpasteurized versions or make your own), but they’re also great sliced into pieces and cooked into a tomato-based barbecue sauce with curry powder—a traditional currywurst!
It might seem like a lot of steps to wrap the sausages, steam them, and grill them, but if you skip the steaming, the rice paper wrappers become brittle on the grill, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but isn’t very sausagelike. If you skip the grilling, the outsides will be gelatinous, which is definitely not sausagelike!
To steam bratwurst, wrap each rice paper-rolled sausage in parchment paper and twist the ends like party crackers, securing each with twist ties or rubber bands. Or place rice-wrapped sausages directly on parchment-lined steamer basket, cutting extra strips of parchment to keep sausages from sticking together. Cool sausages thoroughly before removing from parchment-lined steamer basket.
If you don’t have ground chia seeds, grind whole seeds in a spice grinder or blender, or crush them well with a mortar and pestle. This improves the texture of the sausage. You can also use ground flaxseeds.
You can replace the walnuts with hazelnuts or make the recipe nut free by using sunflower seeds.
In small bowl, mix ground chia seeds with water or beer. Set aside to thicken.
In large skillet, toast walnuts over medium heat for 5 minutes or until aromatic, stirring frequently so they don’t burn. Transfer nuts to plate to cool. Measure spices into small bowl and set aside.
In the same skillet, heat 1 tsp (15 mL) olive oil over medium-low. When hot, add onion and garlic and sauté for 3 to 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Add all spices and stir; cook for 2 minutes more. Add tomato paste, soy sauce, and 1 Tbsp (30 mL) water. Stir and scrape up sticking spices. Remove skillet from heat.
If using canned beans, drain and rinse them, then dry gently in kitchen towel.
In food processor or blender, pulse toasted nuts to rough pebbles. Add drained beans and skillet contents and pulse to fine pebbles. Some texture should remain.
Transfer to a bowl and stir in chia seeds and breadcrumbs. Using a 1/2 cup (125 mL) measure, form into 8 sausages, place on plate, and chill in fridge for 20 minutes. Add a little water if mixture appears too dry to shape.
Fill large, wide bowl with hot water and add one rice wrapper, massaging it until soft. Place wrapper on cutting board or oiled parchment paper and place a sausage horizontally in middle of wrapper. Fold bottom of wrapper over sausage, fold in sides, and continue to roll up the sausage. Repeat with remaining sausages, placing each on plate when done.
Steam bratwurst for 20 minutes (see “Best bratwurst tips”).
Preheat barbecue or grill. Brush grill with oil and unwrap steamed sausages from parchment. Grill for 2 minutes on each side, or until grill marks appear. Or pan-fry in large skillet with 1/2 tsp (2 mL) olive oil, turning regularly until golden, about 7 minutes.
Pears and chocolate make for a very natural friendship and play together beautifully in this plant-based, dairy-free cake. This cake is dense and rich, with a medley of spices, and enhanced by just a hint of espresso powder, which allows that chocolate flavour to shine through. In addition to slices of pears being laid on top, this cake employs some pear purée to add moisture and sweetness to the slightly nutty texture provided by the whole wheat flour. Pear primer A firm pear such as Bosc, recognizable by its distinctive dusty brown skin, is perfect for this dish. When eaten raw, Bosc pears are crisp and not too sweet. When baked, this variety softens up and its flavours are enhanced, but it maintains its characteristic long-necked, graceful shape. Unlike a Bartlett pear, which turns from green to bright yellow when ripe, Bosc pears don’t change much in colour when ripe. Give it a little nudge with your thumb near the neck of the pear and it will give slightly—that’s how you know you’ve got a ripe one. Compared to other pears, Bosc will still be quite firm.
Many flavours that complement pears—sage, ginger, maple syrup—also go well with butternut squash, so it makes sense to bring the two together. For this autumn salad, mixed greens are tossed with marinated squash ribbons that serve to dress the salad with spicy, gingery brightness. A juicy yet firm medium-sweet pear, such as red Anjou, works well here, and its vibrant red skin makes a pretty plate alongside butternut squash. The finishing touch is a sprinkling of crispy sage and maple syrup-toasted hazelnuts. Refrigerator tip Treat butternut squash ribbons as you would a dressing, keeping them in the refrigerator until ready to use. They will last a few days in the refrigerator, and you can have them on hand to dress small amounts of lettuce. If, rather than making one large salad, you want to serve individual amounts of this salad, just dress a few leaves with some ribbons; cut up pear and fry sage leaves as you serve.
Luscious figs loaded onto hearty flatbread make a satisfying breakfast or brunch. They’re sweet and delicious when paired with savoury cinnamon-flavoured crunchy pumpkin seeds and tart goat cheese. And, with a dough enriched with whole wheat flour, hempseeds, and nigella, these flatbreads are sure to be satisfying. They’re also chock full of fibre and protein, and with 6 mg of iron, you’ll be on your way to 31 percent of the recommended daily value. A freezer favourite By making dough in advance and freezing, you can make these individual flatbreads part of your routine for days when you don’t have much time. Simply portion dough individually right after mixing, allow it to rise in the fridge for 8 to 10 hours, and then freeze in individual containers. To thaw an individual ball of dough, 24 hours before you wish to use it, remove the container from the freezer and allow it to thaw in the refrigerator. At least an hour before baking, allow dough to come up to room temperature outside of the fridge.