Tag Archives: shallots

Ethiopian Chickpea Salad

9 May

In Ethiopian culture, fasting is common on various days of the week and during certain times of the year. During their fasts, Ethiopians refrain from consuming animal fats, which is one of the reasons why their cuisine is so veg-friendly. Utilizing legumes and vegetables seasoned with various spices, many these dishes are referred to as wat, a curry or stew-like dish. Because silverware isn’t common in Ethiopian culture, wat is scooped up with a type of sourdough flatbread called injera (source).

Chickpeas, also called garbanzo beans, are often used in Ethiopian cuisine and are one of the earliest cultivated legumes. Ethiopia is currently the sixth largest producer of these legumes and most commonly uses them in wat and salads (source). One cup cooked chickpeas provides 13% DV Potassium, 48% Fiber, 30% Protein, 26% Iron, 10% Vitamin B6 and 19% Magnesium (source).

This simple Ethiopian Chickpea Salad is light and refreshing, and makes for an excellent side dish to any meal.

Ethiopian Chickpea Salad

Ethiopian Chickpea Salad

1 tablespoon olive oil, divided
2 shallots, peeled and minced
1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and thoroughly rinsed
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1 teaspoon white vinegar

Heat 1-1/2 teaspoons olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add shallots and cook, stirring often, until caramelized, approximately 1 minute. Remove shallots from pan.

Heat remaining 1-1/2 teaspoons olive oil in pan and add chickpeas, salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until golden brown, approximately 8-10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.

Place remaining ingredients in a bowl and add shallots and cooled chickpeas. Stir to combine.


Beet Tartare with Cashew Cheese

20 Jun

Beetroots, or beets as most of us like to call them, have a slightly sweet flavor and range in color from red to yellow. These root vegetables can be eaten raw or cooked; boiled, grilled, roasted or steamed; and in sweet and savory dishes. Beets are commonly consumed pickled and in borscht, a European beet soup (source). Thanks to their beautiful red-violet color, beets provide Betanin, a red glycosidic food dye derived from beet juice extract. This food dye is used in various frozen and dry products, and those with a short shelf life (source).

Providing antioxidants, detoxification assistance, and anti-cancer and inflammatory benefits, beets boast a variety of vitamins and nutrients (source). Raw beets are a very good source of Dietary Fiber, Folate, Manganese and Potassium, and a good source of Iron, Magnesium and Vitamin C (source). Raw beet greens, similar in taste to spinach, are also very nutritious, being hailed as a very good source of Calcium, Copper, Dietary Fiber, Iron, Magnesium, Manganese, Potassium, Riboflavin, Thiamin and Vitamins A, B6, C, E and K, as well as a good source of Folate, Pantothenic Acid, Phosphorus, Protein and Zinc (source).

The following recipe is fashioned after that of a popular vegan restaurant in the northwest. Combining fresh, seasoned beets over a bed of cashew cheese, topped with nutritious beet greens and served with baguette slices, this Beet Tartar will have you coming back for more. It certainly has me! Should you choose to do so, cashew cheese can be prepared ahead of time and frozen until ready to use; simply thaw and you are ready to go. Enjoy!

Beet Tartare

Beet Tartare with Cashew Cheese

Cashew Cheese:
1 cup raw, unsalted cashews, soaked in water for 8-12 hours
1 large clove garlic
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons regular unsweetened almond milk

Beet Mixture:
3-4 fresh red beets, approximately 2-inches in diameter
2 tablespoons minced fresh shallots
1 tablespoon non-pareil (small) capers
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons soy sauce
1-1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon red wine vinegar
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
fresh cracked black pepper to taste

1 small whole wheat baguette, sliced

Begin with the cashew cheese by draining soaked cashews and placing into the bowl of a food processor along with garlic and salt. Pulse until combined. Slowly add almond milk and continue processing for another 1-2 minutes or until mixture is smooth. Set aside.

For the beet mixture, remove greens and root ends from beets. Dispose of root ends, set greens aside and place beets in a medium-size pot of water. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook for 20-25 minutes, or until tender when pierced with a fork. Drain and rinse beets with cold water; set aside.

Meanwhile, rinse beet greens thoroughly and chop coarsely. Bring a small pot of water to a boil over high heat and add greens, boiling for 5 minutes. Remove from heat, drain and rinse with cold water. Press out as much liquid as possible; set aside.

Remove peels from boiled beets and discard. Chop beets and add to a large bowl along with remaining beet mixture ingredients. Mix to combine.

Spread cashew cheese in the bottom of a wide, shallow dish. Top with beet mixture and beet greens, and serve with baguette slices.

Beet Tartare

Tempeh Scaloppine with White Beans and Zucchini

21 Jul

As you’ve probably noticed, I’m a fan of zucchini. This versatile food is tasty in both sweet and savory dishes, and offers a great, crispy texture when fresh. Joining the spotlight is our friend tempeh, which I spoke about in my previous post. I thought, why not create a dish that would help you utilize your new-found knowledge of tempeh? This week’s recipe is an excellent protein-packed dish thanks to the use of both tempeh and white beans. At least 50 grams worth to give you a number!

Tempeh, White Bean & Zucchini Ragout

Tempeh Scaloppine with White Beans and Zucchini

1 (8-ounce) package fresh tempeh (or thawed if previously frozen)
1/3 cup all-purpose flour (or whole wheat)
2-4 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup zucchini, diced
1 (15.5-ounce) can cannellini or great northern beans, rinsed and drained
1 large clove garlic, minced
1 medium shallot, thinly sliced
3/4 – 1 cup vegetable broth
2 tablespoons dry sherry wine
2 tablespoons vegan buttery spread
1/2 teaspoon salt
fresh-cracked black pepper to taste

Using a steamer, cook tempeh for 15-20 minutes. Meanwhile, place flour in a bowl; set aside. Remove tempeh from steamer and cut into 1-inch cubes. Place into bowl of flour and toss to coat.

Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add tempeh and cook until golden brown on all sides, approximately 7-10 minutes, adding more oil if pan becomes dry. Remove tempeh from pan and drain on a paper towel-covered plate; set aside.

In the same pan, cook  zucchini, stirring occasionally, until crisp-tender, approximately 1 minute. Remove from pan and set aside.

Place garlic and shallot in pan along with vegetable broth, wine, buttery spread and salt. Whisk and cook for 1 minute. Add tempeh, zucchini and beans to the pan and continue to cook until coated and heated through. Add more salt to taste and garnish with fresh-cracked black pepper.

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