Tofu Tuesday: Spanakopita

Our last recipe in VeganMoFo 2014 is a Greek classic: Spanakopita. Traditionally they’re filled with spinach and feta, so vegan version is naturally filled with spinach and tofu. Once again this has been fun, but blogging every day is also a lot of work. I hope randomofo will be up in October too, I love to browse blogs through it.

A Joyrney with Tiffany nominated us for Liebster Award. Thank you for the honour, but we have to pass answering the questions and nominating other blogs. Today it’s already time to go to bed, and tomorrow after work we’ll have to get ready for a little holiday trip.

spanadingdong

Spanakopita

1 package filo pastry (450 g)
about 2 dl olive oil for brushing

450 g frozen spinach
2 onions, chopped
450 g tofu
3 tbsp nutritional yeast
3 tbsp chopped dill
3 tbsp chopped parsley
1 tbsp chopped mint
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
0,5 tsp pepper

Thaw the filo pastry according to the instructions on the package. Meanwhile prepare the filling. Sauté spinach and onion on a non-stick pan until water has evaporated. Allow to cool a bit. Crumble tofu in a bowl and add the rest of the filling ingredients.

Cut the filo pastry into strips, about 10 cm wide. Take one strip and place it on the table. Brush with olive oil. Put a heaping tablespoon of the filling in to one end. Fold one corner to form a triangle and continue folding until the strip is wrapped around the filling. It’s hard to explain, so check this picture. Brush with olive oil and put on a baking sheet. Make the rest of the pies the same way. Bake 10-15 minutes in 225 Celsius degrees.

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Moroccan Monday: Chickpea Balls

Kefta means ground meat, and Kefta Mkaouara is a traditional Moroccan tagine dish with meatballs and eggs in tomato sauce. We obviously didn’t cook meat and eggs today, but inspired by this dish we made chickpea balls and tomato sauce. We don’t have a tagine, so we just baked the balls in the oven and prepared the sauce on stove. We served them separately, but you can also mix them together.

maroc_bollar

Chickpea Balls

4 dl cooked chickpeas (or 1 can)
1 small onion
1 dl chickpea flour
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tbsp chopped cilantro
2 tbsp chopped parsley
salt, pepper
oil for brushing

Mash the chickpeas until there are no whole chickpeas left. Use blender if you prefer smoother texture. Finely chop the onion. Mix all the ingredients together, add couple of tbsp water if it looks too dry. Form balls and put them on a baking sheet. Brush the balls with oil and bake about half an hour in 200 Celsius degrees. Serve with tomato sauce and couscous/potatoes/rise.

Tomato Sauce

2 onions
1-2 tbsp chopped parsley
1 can tomato passata or crushed tomatoes
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp pepper
2 garlic cloves
1 tsp cinnamon
0,5-1 tsp cayenne

Chop the onions and garlic. Put all the sauce ingredients to a saucepan and simmer at least 30 minutes. Serve with chickpea balls.

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Slow Food Sunday: Chili

Nomad makes great chili, I love it and all our friends love it. Today he made a batch and I wrote down how he made it. This time he used only bell peppers as vegetables, but sometimes he has used other vegetables too, like eggplant or zucchini. You can use beans of your choice, for example combination of kidney beans and white beans are great. Long simmering time smooths the burning of the chili peppers and makes the chili perfect. Also plain soy yogurt or Oatly creme fraiche cuts down the heat, serve the yogurt plain or season it with salt, pepper and lime juice.

chilisincarne

Vegan Chili

1,5 tbsp cumin
2 tsp black pepper
3 Scotch Bonnets or other hot peppers
4-5 garlic cloves
2-3 onions
1 red bell pepper
1 yellow bell pepper
1 green bell pepper
4-5 tbsp oil
1 tsp liquid smoke
few pieces of dark chocolate (about 25 g)
2,5 dl dark beer (make sure it’s vegan, for example Guiness isn’t)
10-12 dl cooked beans (or 3 cans)
2 cans crushed tomatoes

Grind cumin seeds and black pepper. Finely chop chili peppers, garlic and onions. Chop the bell peppers in little bigger chunks. Heat the oil in a pot and sauté cumin, black pepper and chili pepper for a minute. Add onion, garlic and liquid smoke and continue sautéing until onions are soft. Add bell peppers and few minutes later the chocolate. When the chocolate has melted, add beer and simmer until the sauce gets thicker. Add beans and tomatoes and simmer a few hours.

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Seitan Saturday: Burgers

Seitan is a versatile ingredient. You can use them in soups, stews, make steaks or ribs for barbecue, make vegan sausages etc. Seitan is also great for burgers. The seitan recipe below is a variation of these awesome seitan ribz from FatFree Vegan Kitchen -blog. My sister’s comment about these burgers: “They were good. Yum yum.”

seitanburger

Barbecue Seitan Burgers

2,4 dl vital wheat gluten
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 tbsp nutritional yeast
1 tsp garlic powder
1,8 dl water
2 tbsp tahini
1 tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp liquid smoke

marinade:
3 tbsp ketchup
2 tbsp syrup/molasses
1 tbsp oil
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
0,5 tsp salt
1 tsp liquid smoke
1 tsp strong mustard
chili powder or chopped chili pepper (optional)

burger buns
lettuce, tomato, onion etc.
vegan mayo, ketchup, mustard etc.

Combine vital wheat gluten, paprika, nutritional yeast and garlic powder in a bowl. Combine water, tahini, soy sauce and liquid smoke in another bowl and pour onto gluten mixture. Knead couple of minutes. Divide into 6 pieces and form them into flat “steaks”. Bake 20 minutes in 175 Celsius degrees.

Mix the marinade ingredients together and put them into a plastic bag with baked seitan. Rub the marinade all over seitans and refrigerate 30 minutes or few hours.

Fry seitan on a pan in oil, or in the summertime you can grill/barbecue them. Put a piece of seitan inside a burger bun with your favourite burger fillings.

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Flour Friday: Apple Bread

This recipe is from a 1988 Finnish magazine Nomad’s grandmother had saved for some reason. Maybe for the many recipes for breads it has, a lot of them look really great. Anyway, considering its the harvest season and apples are plentiful this year (well, at least over here they are), here’s a bread which calls for apples. It also has cinnamon, which in combination with the apples brings a wonderful holiday aroma into your house while baking!

omenaleipa

Apple Loaves

2,5 dl plant based milk (I used oat milk)
25 g yeast
1 tsp salt
0,5 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp sugar
3,5 dl grated apples
9-10 dl bread flour
0,25 dl oil

Heat the milk a little and dissolve yeast in it. Add salt, cinnamon, sugar and grated apples. Knead a dough with bread flour, add oil in the end of kneading. Cover with a towel and allow to rise.

Punch the dough down and form two bread loaves. Put them on baking sheet, cover with a towel and allow to rise again. Cut shallow slits with a sharp knife on the surface of the risen breads. Bake in 200 Celsius degrees for half an hour or until done. The bread is ready when it sounds hollow when you knock the bottom of the bread.

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Tomato Thursday: Croissants

In Finland croissant is called sarvi (horn) because of it’s shape. They can be flaky or more like bread rolls. They be filled with nearly anything, but ham, cheese and chocolate are probably most popular fillings.

horns

Tomato and Leek Croissants

filling: 
8 cm piece of leek
2 garlic cloves
2 tbsp oil
3 big tomatoes
1 tsp oregano
1 tsp thyme
½ tsp sugar
salt, pepper

dough:
2 dl soy milk or other plant based milk
25 g yeast
½ tsp salt
1 dl barley flour
5,5 dl wheat flour
100 g margarine, room temperature

sesame or poppy seeds

Chop the leek and garlic. Heat the oil in a pan and sauté leek and garlic 5 minutes. Chop the tomatoes, you can also scald them before chopping if you want to. Add tomatoes herbs and sugar to the pan and continue sautéing until tomatoes are a bit mushy and there’s not much liquid left. Allow to cool a bit.

Warm the milk and add yeast and salt. Stir until dissolved. Add barley flour and 5 dl wheat flour and stir to combine. Add margarine and knead, add little more wheat flour if needed. Roll half of the dough into a circle, about 30 cm diameter. Cut into 6 sectors, or 8 if you want to make smaller croissants. Put couple of teaspoons of tomato filling on each sector and roll them starting from the wider end and shape them as croissants. Repeat with the other half of the dough. Put croissants on baking sheet and cover with a towel, allow to rise 10-20 minutes. Brush with water and sprinkle sesame or poppy seeds on top. Bake 10-15 minutes in 225 Celsius degrees.

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Wine Wednesday: Pasta

I like cooking with wine. Sometimes I even put it in the food.

A deciliter or two of red wine makes tomato sauce so much better. I always add some when I make tomato sauce for pasta or pizza, if I have a bottle at home.

ww-pasta

Tomato and Vegetable Sauce

1 onion
2 garlic cloves
1 celery stalk
1 carrot
½ bell pepper
2 tbsp oil
1 tsp thyme
1 can crushed tomatoes (or 500 g fresh, chopped tomatoes)
1,5 dl red wine
1 tsp sugar
salt, pepper
fresh or dried herbs (basil, oregano)

optional additions:
fried mushrooms
1 dl red lentils
1 can beans

Chop the onion and garlic. Dice celery, carrot and bell pepper. Heat the oil in a sauce pan and sauté the onion with thyme about 5 minutes on low-medium heat. Add other vegetables and sauté another 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, red wine and sugar. If you’re using lentils add them at this point too, and some water. Simmer 30 minutes or longer, add some water if it looks like your sauce is getting too thick. If you’re using mushrooms or beans add them in the end of simmering. Season with salt, pepper and herbs and serve with pasta.

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