Tuesday, November 29, 2011
Tuna-Free Sandwich Filling from Vegan Planet. I Could Live on this Stuff!
Lately my favorite cookbook is Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson. I have adored just about every recipe I have tried from this book. My most favorite is the Tuna-Free sandwich filling. It is primarily chickpeas and almonds. Usually when I make a batch I practically live on it until it's gone, because I just can't get enough of it.
The recipe calls for kelp powder, but I have discovered that dulse works just as well. It's a slightly different flavor, perhaps stronger than the kelp, but it works nicely. For some reason I was having a really hard time locating kelp powder, but I had plenty of dulse, so I just tore up the strips of dulse until I had about 1/8 cup of small pieces, then added them in when I pulsed the chickpeas and almonds. Then I finally picked up a container of kelp powder while I was in Southern California for a week, and now I've had the opportunity to try it with each.
A word about the dulse: the package I have says to look out for small rocks and things in the seaweed. Don't skip that step. I have found tiny shells in my dulse. So glad I didn't add those into my food!
Prep for this recipe is easy. It calls for blanched almonds, so you need to plan ahead a bit for that, but it's really simple. Just boil water, and pour it over the almonds, letting them soak until the almond peels can be easily pulled off of the almonds. It takes about 5 minutes of soak time, but you'll be able to tell by testing an almond. If the peel isn't coming off easily, give it a few more minutes.
I use a little less mustard than called for in the recipe. It asks for 1 1/2 teaspoons. I only use about 1 teaspoon. I like mustard but I don't love it, and using the full amount gave the sandwich filling too much of a mustard flavor for my taste.
If you are a fan of pickles, try putting some finely minced pickle into your batch. It'll be lovely.
You don't need to limit yourself to putting this stuff between two slices of bread, either. You can put it on top of crackers, or wrap it in a tortilla, or even just put a couple of heaping spoonfuls on top of your salad.
I've been really big on integrating various types of seaweed into meals lately (the health benefits are tremendous, plus I always feel great after eating it!), and this sandwich filling is just one awesome way to do that.
Tuna-Free Sandwich Filling
1 can (drained) or 1 1/2 cups of cooked chickpeas
1/2 cup blanched almonds
1 Tablespoon juice of freshly squeezed lemon
1 teaspoon kelp powder or 1/8 cup shredded dulse
1 or 2 stalks of celery, finely chopped
1 or 2 scallions, finely chopped
1/4 cup vegan mayo (I used Vegenaise)
1 teaspoon or more Dijon or stoneground mustard
salt and pepper to taste
Pulse the chickpeas and almonds in a food processor, adding in the lemon juice and kelp or dulse until desired consistency. The recipe says "coarsely chopped" but I let it get a little more chopped than that because I find it easier to chew the nuts when they are in smaller pieces. When those ingredients are well combined, transfer the mix into a large bowl. Add the remaining ingredients and then check to see if it's moist enough. If not, add a little more vegan mayo. Cover and pop the bowl into the fridge for 30 minutes or longer before serving.
By the way, here are some other recipes I've tried loved from this cookbook:
Teriyaki Glazed Tempeh
Tofu and Vegetable Lo Mein