In the past, I found Veggie Lasagna to be disappointing and gross. The pre-fab frozen versions were depressing. My own attempts with noodles and sauce and cheese (yes! Even using REAL cheese!) made an icky, runny, vegetable slop.
But in my head, I still like lasagna and want to eat a healthy, meat-free version.
A lifetime ago someone prepared eggplant “lasagna” for me that had heavenly flavors(but was really more like eggplant steaks covered in sauce and cheese, more than a layered lasagna) and the memory resurfaces to haunt me from time to time.
I have made many dismal attempts at preparing Eggplant in any manner that did not result in a shapeless gray loogie, and finally, FINALLY, my friends, I bring you a Veggie Lasagna, with Eggplant “Noodles” that ACTUALLY TASTES GOOD!!!
*be forewarned: these instructions might seem long, complicated and time consuming, but I assure you it is worth it, and it will get easier the more times you make it. PLUS, you could make two smaller lasagnas and freeze one before baking, for future dining enjoyment.
Ingredients for the “Noodles”
2 large eggplants or 5-6 japanese eggplants
¼ cup salt
8 -10 cups water
Peel the eggplants and cut into thin, (approximately 1/8 inch) slabs. You can achieve this with a very sharp knife, or with a mandolin (I found this to be an excellent opportunity to use the ridged blade. I thought it made the eggplant look more “noodle-y”)
Dissolve salt in the water in a large pot. Submerge the eggplant “noodles” (you COULD do the prep work for Eggplant Noodle Spaghetti at the same time and brine all the noodles at once. Conserve Salt… Conserve Water… Conserve Time…. Everybody wins!)
After the “Noodles” have been submerged at least 30 minutes, remove them from the pot (reserve the liquid).
Spread the noodles on clean, dry towels (multiple layers), cover with additional clean, dry towels, and lay a flat, weighted object over them. This presses the moisture out of the eggplant. I like to change out the damp towels for dry towels after a few hours, leaving the eggplant pressing overnight and continue the lasagna assembly the next day, but I realize not everyone likes to take an entire week to prepare a single meal. SO, press the noodles for at least 2 hrs, exchanging the damp towels for dry towels as often as necessary.
Ingredients for White Filling:
3 cup cauliflower, “Riced”
1 cup parmesan
½ cup feta
1 Tbs packed fresh basil (minced)
1 Tbs fresh marjoram (minced)
Discard the outer leaves and thoroughly wash your cauliflower. Cut Cauliflower head into quarters and remove the stem. “Rice” the cauliflower by shredding it in a food processor, or by using the largest holes on a box grater (be careful with your fingers!). Cauliflower should end up crumbly and sort-of rice-like.
Bring the brine reserved from the noodles to a boil. Once it is boiling, add the cauliflower. Boil very briefly (about 5 minutes), then pour through a fine colander/screen. (you COULD prepare additional cauliflower in this fashion at the same time, and make Tasty Nuggets or cauliflower pizza crust for future enjoyment.)
Once cauliflower is cool enough to be touched, press out as much liquid as possible. Allow cauliflower to cool and dry on a clean, absorbent surface.
Combine Eggs, Parmesan, Feta, minced Basil and cool, moisture free cauliflower until evenly dispersed. Set Aside.
Ingredients for Brown Filling:
4 cup portabellas (chopped)
4 clove garlic (minced)
2Tbs fresh basil (minced)
½ Tbs olive oil
Heat oil in a skillet. Toss all ingredients in the oil, on medium heat, stirring occasionally. The mushrooms will release quite a bit of moisture into the pan. Continue to cook until all liquid has cooked off. Remove from heat and set aside.
2-2.5 cups marinara (my lovely low carb recipe is here)
2 cups mozzarella cheese
Oil (for the pan)
Instructions for Lasagna Assembly:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Spread a thin-thin-super-thin layer of oil over the interior of the 9×13 inch pan. Pour ¼ cup marinara into the bottom of the pan and evenly distribute (it is fine if there is not complete coverage.)
Lay the eggplant “noodles” in a single layer across the bottom of the pan.
*eggplants are irregular, natural objects, and no two “noodles” will be identically shaped. I try to make sure my bottom layer is made of the nicest pieces to provide stability when serving it. The rest of the layers I just do my best. I try to keep the pieces going in the same direction as much as possible, since eggplant is fibrous and won’t just bend-to-the-will of a plastic spatula the way traditional noodles do.
Spread half of “white filling” over the noodles.
Spread half of the “brown filling” over the white.
Spread ¾ cup marinara over the brown.
Place another layer of “noodles.”
After placing the top layer of eggplant noodles, smear with 1/4 -1/2 cup of remaining marinara and sprinkle 2 cups mozzarella over the whole surface.
Bake on 350 degrees for 40 minutes, until nice and bubbly, cheese is melted and starting to brown.
It is a ton of fun to make noodles out of veggies. As previously mentioned , I have a simple vegi-noodle-making device that I picked up from a discount retail store. It does a perfectly satisfactory job turning sweet potatoes, cucumbers and zucchini into pasta shaped strips.
But what is a gal to do when she gets the idea to make spaghetti out of an eggplant? I went my local Asian Market to get a bag full of purple-phallus-shaped-Japanese-eggplant thinking “these will be PERFECT for shoving into my cheapo veggie-noodler since they are already the right shape and size!
The Japanese eggplants turned out to be uncooperative assholes. I felt like I was trying to sharpen a sponge in a pencil sharpener. SUPER DISAPPOINTING.
Did I let it stop me? HELLZ NO!
Next Strategy: Fancy-Mandoline-that-was-a-much-appreciated-gift-because-I-would-not-spend-that-much-money-on-Myself! I pushed enough buttons and turned enough knobs that eventually it revealed a row of upright razors in addition to the normal straight cutting edge. I peeled the eggplant, tossed aside the recommended safety veggie-holding apparatus and went-to-town.
Zip ZipZip. Beautiful noodles… Until I got about halfway through the eggplant and then I was back to the ol’ “sponge in a pencil sharpener” problem. However, once I start making a little progress I cannot be derailed, so I proceeded by hand and was able to make nice noodles using a paring knife and a cutting board.
So really, it’s not HOW you get the noodles that’s important, it’s what you DO with them that really makes this lunacy seem like a perfectly valid expenditure of energy!
Eggplant Noodle Spaghetti
4 cups eggplant “spaghetti noodles”
6 cups water
¼ cup salt
1 Tbs olive oil (or preferred oil)
1 cup low carb marinara sauce (like this one!)
Dissolve salt in the water in a large pot or bowl. You may be thinking “WTF?!?!? ¼ CUPS of SALT?!?!?” I know. It’s scary. It’s brine now. Just do it and move on 😉
Submerge your freshly “noodled” eggplant into the brine. You may have to set something over the noodles to hold them under. Let them soak for at least 30 minutes.
Remove the noodles from the water and spread them out on a clean, dry towel (it’s even better if the towel is doubled or tripled over).
Cover the noodles with more layers of clean, dry towel and place something flat with a bit of heft on top of it (imagine the process involved for preserving plants for your plant collection in school. This is similar, except you probably don’t want to put the noodles in your favorite hard-backed tome.)
**I like to start this process a full day before I plan to eat it. I swap out the damp towels for dry towels at least once. However, you could achieve satisfactory results after a couple of hours of the noodles being pressed.
Once your “noodles” are ready, heat your oil in a skillet and then add the noodles. Toss the noodles to evenly coat with the oil. I love it if the noodles get a tiny bit seared… it really brings out an amazing nutty flavor. Once noodles are sufficiently seared and softened, top with 1/2 cup marinara and serve immediately.
Makes 2 Servings
Marinara is a wonderful thing… Even if someone serves me a “bad” marinara, it’s still going to be pretty darn good. When I was a broke college student I had a pantry stocked with various cheap/no-name jars&cans of marinara and plain ol’ spaghetti noodles. I sure thought I was living in “high cotton”!
If you don’t have any dietary restrictions, aren’t disturbed by processed foods and you already have a preferred brand of marinara, then by all means: stick with it. However, I’ve got a Big Love of marinara and I find myself surrounded by more-and-more people who are trying to be conscious of what they are consuming; so I fiddled around and developed this low-carb, gluten free, corn free, nut free vegan marinara that would fool/satisfy even the most rigid Standard American Diet eater.
3 28 oz canned tomatoes (low sodium, without sugar)
6 clove garlic
1/3 cup basil
1 Tbs fresh marjoram
¼ cup red cabbage
1 red bell pepper
6 whole tomatoes
¼ tsp smoked paprika (optional)
Sea salt to taste (optional)
1 Tbs monk fruit sweetener or Madhava Agave5 (optional) *
*I really hate promoting specific brands and I am in no way telling you to run right out and by the Agave5… do your research and decide which sweeteners you think are good-vs-evil and make the best choice for yourself. I bought the Agave5 on an impulse and though it worked nicely in this recipe, but I am still undecided about alternative sweetener in general.
Open the cans of tomato and pour them (with liquid) into a large dutch oven. Bring to a simmer, uncovered,allowing the liquid to reduce for several hours.
Roast the whole tomatoes and peppers (refresher instructions here) and allow them to totally cool before removing the peel. Quarter the tomatoes and peppers and remove the seeds and stems. Chop/dice the veggies to your preferred sized “chunk”. Set aside.
Once most of the liquid has reduced from your simmering canned tomatoes, transfer it to your blender (you will probably have to do this in multiple batches, unless you have a monstrously huge blender) and whiz it up until totally smooth. Add the Paprika, Garlic, Basil, Marjoram and Red Cabbage to the blender and continue to blend until evenly smooth. Transfer all this sauce back to your dutch oven.
Add the chopped tomatoes and peppers to the sauce and simmer for approximately 20 minutes before tasting. I generally like a lot of salt, but I did not feel it was necessary to add salt to this recipe. You may feel differently. If the folks you are feeding really prefer some sweetness in their marinara, adding 1 Tbs monk fruit sweetener or Madhava Agave5 should give it more of a flavor they are used to without blowing the carbs out of the water.
If sauce is too runny for your taste, continue to simmer uncovered until it reduces to your desired consistency.
This sauce is great for pizza, dipping Unicorn Nuggets , eating with a spoon…. The options are plentiful!
My casual research of Pho has lead me to understand that “pho” actually refers to the noodles, and not the broth/seasonings. My Sloppy Pho gives a nod to the broth flavors, the typical garnishes, and utilizes vegi-noodles (rather than traditional rice noodles) in an unconventional manner.
There are many gizmos out there for transforming vegetables into “noodles”. Some of them are quite spendy and sturdy, for the serious rawtarians and veg-oodling fanatics. There are also inexpensive “As-Scene-on-TV” devices that do a passable job for the casual vegi-noodle maker. I think it would be really fun to have one of the psycho-serious models, but I am able to make-do with a cheezy hand-held tool I picked up for $8 at a discount retail store.
Without further ado, I give you:
the “Slop” Ingredients
1 cup water
2 star anise pods
4 cardamom pods
1/4 tsp coriander
1/4 tsp cloves
4 cloves garlic (minced)
1/2 Tbs ginger (minced)
1 1/2 cups shiitake mushrooms (chopped)
2 cups portabella mushrooms (chopped)
1/2 cup Thai Basil (packed)
3 jalapeños (seeded and diced)
3 cups red cabbage (chopped)
2 cups Mung bean sprouts
1Tbs psyllium husks
1/4 cup pumpkinseed flour
1/3 cup chia meal
1 ½ cups water
2Tbs lime juice
If you have a tea strainer or a cheesecloth sack, place the star anise, cardamom, and cloves inside. If not, just leave them loose (but you will have to fish them out later.) Put these ingredients and 1 cup water in a saucepan and simmer for 10-5 minutes.
Remove the spices.
Transfer this liquid to a large skillet and add 1 Tbs Quoc Viet Vegetarian Soup base, minced garlic, minced ginger, and mushrooms.
In a separate container, combine chia meal, 1 ½ cups water, 1 Tbs Quoc Viet Vegetarian Soup base and lime juice. Let sit for 15 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes to keep chia from clumping. It should thicken into gelatinous sauce.
During this time cook the mushrooms uncovered on medium heat, until liquid has been absorbed, mushrooms have reduced and are starting to brown.
Add all remaining ingredients to the skillet and gently stir to evenly combine. Cook very briefly, until cabbage and bean sprouts are slightly softened and colors have brightened.
Remove from heat.
The “Noodles” Ingredients:
2 sweet potatoes
1 Tbs Chili Garlic Oil (or regular, boring Olive Oil)
Peel the sweet potatoes and use your preferred vegi-noodle-making-method. Toss “noodles” and oil in a skillet on medium-high heat until sweet potatoes are an al dente texture and bright orange (6-8 minutes.) Remove from heat.
Serve the Sloppy Pho with fresh cilantro, radish pickles and sriracha mayo.
*you can buy pre-fab sriracha mayo or make your own vegan version by blending vegan mayo and sriracha in a 2:1 ratio
My friend Chervyn is so much tech-savvier than me, and she has coached me somewhat through making a spreadsheet of the nutritional value of these components!
You COULD wrap it up in a butter lettuce leaf for a ridiculously flavorful and hearty vegan, low carb treat.
OR serve it on a multi grain bun and make everyone jealous of your Oompa Loompa Lunch!
OR transform your Sweet Potato Noodles into a BUN!!! (recipe below)
Sweet Potato Noodle Bun
I found this recipe for a healthier “ramen bun” and it was like the clouds parted and I heard choirs of preadolescent cherubs singing… it is FanF*ckingTastic. I don’t own what the author is selling (as previously mentioned), but the recipe is so good that I was almost tempted to splurge 😉
I was a little shocked when I tallied up the carbs and calories, so I thought “we can do better than this!”
I made a couple of modifications and I am also providing a vegan option. The flax meal and psyllium not only increase the fiber content, but they allow me to stretch this recipe to make 3 whole buns (6 pieces).
1 large sweet potato
1 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbs flax meal soaked in 4 Tbs water (OR 1 egg + 1 Tbs flax meal + 2 Tbs water)
1 Tbs psyllium husk
2 tsp preferred cooking oil
Peel your sweet potato and use your preferred method of turning it into long, fettuccini-like noodles.
Heat a medium skillet with a teensy bit of oil and toss in the “noodles”. Keep them moving. You are essentially just trying to heat them enough for them to turn bright orange and soften to al dente texture (6-8 minutes). Transfer the “noodles” to a large mixing bowl and remove the skillet from the heat.
Sprinkle the psyllium over the “noodles” and toss to evenly distribute. Pour the gooey flax mixture (or eggy flax mixture) over the “noodles” and gently toss (try not to mush or mangle the sweet potato).
Divide the mixture evenly between 6 ramekins (or equivalent) and gently press down into a flat patty. Place a piece of wax paper or parchment paper over the opening of the ramekin and set a jar or can on top to apply pressure to the sweet-potato-noodle-disc.
Place ramekins in the refrigerator for 15-20 minutes to cool and to “set up.”
After 15-20 minutes, gently turn ramekins onto lightly oiled skillet and remove ramekins (leaving the perfectly formed discs on the skillet). DO NOT CROWD. You need to have room to get a spatula flat beneath them periodically to check their progress. Set burner on medium-low heat.
Once the discs are nicely toasted on one side, carefully flip them over and toast the other side. They need to be a little seared to hold together.
Place them on a cooling rack or on a clean, dry towel to cool.
*If using egg recipe rather than the vegan version, cover the skillet once you are cooking the second side of the discs to ensure the egg gets all the way cooked (this is less crucial in the vegan version).
**these “buns” are a little mushy. They hold together great for the Sloppy Pho sandwich, but once you take a bite, everything is kind of the same texture. If you want them to be more “bread like”, place in the food dehydrator on 130 degrees for a couple of hours, or closely monitor them on the lowest setting in your oven.
*** make sure “buns” are totally cool before storing them in an air-tight container in the fridge.
I have created a handy-dandy chart to compare the different presentations for the Sloppy Pho.
But if you still aren’t satisfied, throw that sh*t in a jar and eat it as a salad! 😉
This dish is hard to describe, hard to name AND hard to write instructions for since I did not attend French culinary academy and I don’t definitively know the names of fancy cuts of veggies! The dish looks and awful-lot like mac-n-cheese… but it tastes more like potato au gratin… and even though it was inspired by Pho and has quite a bit of Quoc Viet Vegetarian Pho Soup Base, it does not taste Asian at all. It really just taste like super southern comfort food… it’s a fantastic head-scratcher! Whatever it is, it is a WONDERFUL companion to the “Sloppy Pho“, or an afternoon snack, or an I-just-got-dumped-and-want-to-pig-out-on-the-couch-but-i-still-want-my-clothes-to-fit indulgence.
1 cup cashews (soaked for 6-12 hrs)
2 cups (additional) water
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1 Tbs Psyllium husks
1 Tbs Quot Viet Vegetarian Pho Soup Base
1/2 Tbs lime juice
1/4 tsp smoked paprika
Drain the soaking water from the cashews.
Put all ingredients and 2 cups fresh water in the blender and puree until totally smooth.
Heat in a saucepan until thick and cheesy. Remove from heat so it doesn’t scorch.
2 large butternut squash
1 Tbs olive oil
1 Tbs Quot Viet Vegetarian Pho Soup Base
Peel the squash, remove the seeds, and cut into relatively even batonnets (I finally found some useful terms and photos on the Junior Chef’s website. YAY! Hooray for young culinary wizards dumbing it down to my Bachelor of Fine Art Level!)
Toss the batonnets, olive oil, and 1 Tbs pho soup mix in a large skillet and put on medium-high heat for 6-8 minutes, until they are a nice al dente texture.
Pour the “cheese sauce” over the squash and stir the dish until everything is incorporated and heated through. Enjoy! Mwah!
**Update: My butternut squash plants are growing their little ASSES off, but so far I have only had one Squash big enough to eat (though I predict I will be posting a ton of butternut squash recipes in the not-too-distant-future, once the crop comes in). I followed this same recipe but used some big-honkin Japanese Sweet Potato instead and it was also FANTASTICALLY DELICIOUS! (sweet potato required longer cooking time and a bit more water). To sum up, the sauce is spectacular and can be put on just about anything 🙂
Spinach dip might just be my favorite thing… I went through a dark time (actually, it was a pretty spectacular time) several months ago where I was working from home, cooking and art-ing my days away.
During this time there were a string of social events where it was appropriate to bring a dish or appetizer. My spinach dip was received with Wild Praise and was subsequently requested for all the following gatherings.
Then began the downward spiral…
I was no longer “socially” Spinach Dipping… I started making it at home as “Appetizer for Dinner” with my Significant Other…
Then I started Spinach Dipping when I had the house to myself or was staying up late or …
Finally, I had to admit there was a problem when I could no longer zip my pants.
I had to quit.
I’d been off the Spinach Dip for about 6 months and was finally back into my “good butt” britches.
However, for the Stepdaughter’s colorful birthday, the Spinach Kale Dip was resurrected. I made a couple of clever alterations to temper the damage. While under close supervision, I was able to enjoyed it in moderation, and I feel fairly secure in my recovery ;-).
IF consumed responsibly, this dip can be enjoyed by health foodies and junk foodies alike.
Just remember that I warned you…
Spinach Kale Dip
(for a large party. Not to be left alone with…)
16oz tub of Sour Cream
16oz greek yogurt
10oz frozen spinach
10oz frozen kale
1 ½ cups mayonnaise
1 package Vegetable dip/soup mix (like Knorr)
1 1oz package ranch dip mix
1 cup chopped green onions
1 cup chopped lotus root (in brine)
Thaw the frozen veggies and squeeze out as much moisture as possible. Combine all ingredients. Chill at least 2 hours to allow the flavors to incorporate.
Dip is delicious on salty, whole grainy crackers, chips, fresh vegetables…
If you are attempting to moderate your carbs (which is a good idea if you get hooked on this dip), you can make low carb chips like this:
Low Carb Stinky Cheese Chips
Combine shredded parmesan and asiago cheeses in a 1:1 ratio.
Make little piles (2 Tbs each) of the cheese mixture on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake at 350 for 5-8 minutes, until starting to brown at the edges. Allow chips to breathe in the open air until completely cool. If the cheese discs aren’t totally crispy, put them in the dehydrator for several hours, or on the lowest setting in your oven. These are another dangerously addictive food… proceed with caution!
I have received feedback from several sources (including my Standard American Diet significant other) that vegetarian health-foods with familiar, S.A.D. names set an immediate expectation that will likely disappoint a reluctant taste-subject.
For example: my first ever cookbook (Madhur Jaffry’s World Vegetarian) taught me a super-yummy “Black Eyed Pea Pancake” recipe that I have prepared many times. However, it is not-at-all related to the kind of food you would get at a greasy-spoon diner, drown in syrup and nosh with crispy bacon. It is actually more like a flat-bread or wrap, and is excellent for sopping up savory stews/curries or dips. However, for some, the term “pancake” evokes a very rigid expectation that will not be swayed. If I called the dish “not-really-a-tortilla-but-not-quite-falafel” or even “floppy discs” it might meet much less resistance…
Low carb/vegetable based pizza crusts are very popular right now. And with good reason: they are FANTASTIC!!! Cauliflower crust pizzas are getting well-deserved praise, but they aren’t fooling anyone into thinking they are REAL “Pizza-Pizzas”. I enjoy them at my house and I love to prepare them for friends and family, but I recently had an inspiration: mold the “dough” into in fun sizes and shapes for dipping! Great for Parties and fun for kids (as long as you are careful not to use terms like “pizza” or “ch__ken nugget” then people can just enjoy them at face-value).
My first experiments were with cookie cutters. Now, some people have “sweet” and “kid appropriate” cookie cutters, but at my house it’s either zombies or ninjas.
I initially rolled out the “dough” and tried to stamp out the shapes.
Huge. Stupid. Mess.
Then, I wised-up and just filled the cookie cutters one at a time.
Bada-Bing-Bada-Boom: wonderfully twisted “Zombie Nuggets” (that also could pass for a Sasquatch or Chewbacca).
If you have little humans in your house who like to make art projects with their food, there is a ton of potential for decorating with capers, olives, colorful shredded veggies, etc etc.
Since I still had quite a bit of “dough” I decided to see what would happen if I mooshed it into silicon candy molds (unicorn heads, of course). This process was possibly even easier than the cookie cutter method, but you run the risk of them sticking and coming out all mangled.
Half of the Unicorns were given a pinkish hue by adding a bit of red cabbage. Sneaking in other colorful vegetables is another opportunity to make it kid-appealing (as well as more nutritionally diverse.)
There are many options for dips to serve with these “nuggets”, but my favorites are mint chutney or the pumpkin bbq sauce.
1 1/2 -2 heads cauliflower
5-7 cloves garlic (minced)
3 eggs (or substitute 3 Tbs flaxseed meal soaked in 7 Tbs water)
1/3 cup psyllium husks
1/3 cup flaxseed meal
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
3 Tbs minced fresh herb of choice (I prefer basil or green onion)
½ tsp sea salt
½ cup shredded parmesan (or vegan substitute)
1 cup shredded mozzarella (or vegan substitute)
Discard the outer leaves and thoroughly wash your cauliflower. Cut Cauliflower head into quarters and remove the stem. “Rice” the cauliflower by shredding it in a food processor, or by using the largest holes on a box grater (be careful with your fingers!). Cauliflower should end up crumbly and sort-of rice-like. *For this recipe you will need 6 cups of “riced” cauliflower.
Press/strain/drain as much moisture as you can from the cauliflower (you can let it rest in a fine-mesh strainer for a couple of hours, periodically trying to press out some moisture. OR you can spread it out on a clean, dry towel, and press it gently with another clean, dry towel to blot off the moisture. OR you can spread it out on food dehydrator sheets and set on 100-115 degrees for about an hour. I use all of these methods, depending on my mood and available time.)
Combine all ingredients in a large bowel. This is your “dough”.
Now you have options:
I like to designate a portion of the dough as a frozen pizza crust for future use. To do this, I line a 9×16” pan with parchment paper and press 2-2.5 cups of the “dough” into a flat “pizza crust”. I put the pan in the freezer until the dough is totally frozen, then transfer it into a sealed container or freezerbag. This gives me an extra pizza crust that just needs toppings and to be baked at 350 degrees for 45 min-1 hr on a parchment paper lined pan.
You can just make a million fun-shaped-tasty nuggets (which could also be frozen as dough and baked in the future.) Cooking times will depend on the size/shape thickness of your “nuggets”.
* For my zombies, which were approximately ½ inch thick, I baked them on a parchment lined pan in a 350 degree oven for about 40 minutes. They are done when they are just starting to brown at the edges and are springy (NOT STICKY) to the touch.
*For my unicorn heads, baked in a silicon mold (which I greased with a thin layer of coconut oil), I baked 25 minutes at 350 degrees. I removed them from the oven and allowed them to cool about 5 minutes before turning them out of the mold, back onto the baking sheet. Then I returned to the oven for another 5-10 minutes until just browning at the edges and springy (NOT STICKY) to the touch.
It would be very difficult to accurately predict what size shape, and thickness of nuggets each person will make, so I’ve calculated the nutritional value as if this recipe made 10 servings. I also calculated for full-fat, real dairy cheese and eggs, rather than vegan alternatives.
I really really really love crunchy salty food. I can eat chips and dip or crackers and cheese as a meal and be happy as a clam!
So it has been a lot of fun to find healthier options to transform what would normally be perceived as a junky snack into a legitimate, well-balanced food.
In the photo, Top Left: topped with fermented curried cauliflower and fresh rosemary (which looked great for the photo but had WAY too many flavors for me to recommend as a combination… but the recipe for the cauliflower is here) On the Right: atop yogurt cheese (instructions here) with coconut bacon (I used this recipe) Bottom Left: with fresh cucumber and grape tomato. MMMMMMMMmmmmmmmMMMM!
Sea Salt and Rosemary Lentil Crisps
1 cups lentil flour (I used the large greenish brown lentils and pulverized them in my coffee grinder)
1 cup ground flax
1 ½ Tbs fresh rosemary
½ cup sauerkraut juice (or water)
1/4 cup nutritional yeast (optional)
2 Tbs psyllium husks
½ tsp sea salt
¼ cup olive oil (or oil of choice)
1 cup water
Thoroughly combine all ingredients. This should be a very wet dough. Let rest at room temperature for 30 min-1 hour.
Roll as thin as possible between two sheets of parchment paper. Use a knife or pizza wheel score the dough (this is to make “break lines” if you are hoping for neat, uniform crisps). *I rolled the dough thin enough to make 80 2”x2” squares.
If you have a food dehydrator, transfer the dough (still on the parchment) onto the trays, set to 115 degrees and walk away. They should be edible tomorrow.
If you are using a conventional oven… bake on 200 degrees. After 45 minutes (assuming the dough has become somewhat crisp), break the pieces apart along the score lines and spread them out to bake more evenly. Continue to check them every 15 minutes, removing any that begin to brown at the edges.
Allow to cool completely in the open air before sealing them in an air-tight container.
They are a tasty treat on their own, or you can get creative with dips and toppings!