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Completely Board Post #19: Chia Seed Jam

Veg-am's Completely Board - Vegan Month of Food 2014

 

Here it is the last day of Vegan MoFo!  Who can believe it went by so quickly.  And, I’m cutting it down to the wire.  This is technically my 20th post since I made an introductory post, but I’m going to try to get one more pinned recipe made and posted today. But first, let’s get on with post #19.

I must have pinned this recipe back when I was thinking about how good chia is for me but was still afraid of it.  Now that chia pudding is one of my favorite things, there is no reason to be afraid of Oh My Veggies’ Chia Seed Jam (vegetarian site, vegan post).

I went with figs as my fruit, but apparently most fruits will work.  I had some frozen figs in the freezer (multiple bags) and decided to try something a bit different from the usual strawberry or peach jam that I’m used to.  It worked like a charm exactly the way the recipe said.  It’s not the most photogenic of jams, but the photo shows you how good the consistency of the jam is.

Chia Seed Fig Jam

If you like jam but don’t want to go to all the work of sealing jars, this is definitely the way to go.  It took about 1/2 hour to make and then was left in the refrigerator to finish setting up.  Easy peasy.  I can’t wait to try it with next summer’s fresh blackberries!

Valentine’s Breakfast: Silver Dollar Corn Pancakes with Strawberries

I had some drama in the kitchen this morning trying to make crepes (the non-buckwheat ones) gluten free. I ruined the whole batch, but had already promised breakfast to my mom and dad. And, I’d already sliced the strawberries -how can you have Valentine’s Day breakfast without strawberries? (Well, I guess you can if you can’t get them where you live this time of year, but I was lucky). So I looked at the blueberry corn pancakes in Veganomicon for a little guidance, changed them up a lot based on my allergies, my pantry, and the fact that deglutenized/sans blueberries they were way too thin. I came up with a nice corn pancake recipe. These are money! (silver dollar…money…get it? ;)) We’ll be having these again.
Silver Dollar Corn Pancakes (Makes 10, 3 servings – depending on how hungry everybody is!)
Sift together and set aside:
  • 3/8 cup this gf all purpose flour mix
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1/3 tsp baking soda & 2/3 tsp cream of tartar (1 tsp baking powder would work instead of these two)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
Mix the following:
  • 3/4 cup rice milk
  • 2 Tbsp + 2 tsp water (approx 1/6 of a cup)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 Tbsp agave nectar
  • 1 tsp lemon zest
Mix the two groups together until just combined. Brush a light layer of coconut oil onto a preheated (medium-low heat) heavy skillet. Pour batter into pan using a 1/8 cup measuring cup. Cook until the top bubbles, the edges are drying and the bottom is golden brown. Flip pancakes and cook until the bottoms are golden brown. I found that I didn’t have to re-oil each time – just use the brush to redistribute the oil that may have moved to the edges of the pan. If your pan is dry, reapply a thin layer of oil. I had to make these in 4 batches (3 of 3 pancakes and then 1 lone pancake), so you might want a plate and a piece of foil handy to keep them warm.
To make the strawberry pancakes that are shown in the picture: Place 3 pancakes on each plate. (Wrap the leftover pancake in the foil and save in the refrigerator for later or give somebody an extra). Top with fresh, sliced strawberries. Using a small metal sieve/strainer, sprinkle on the powdered sugar – about a tsp per plate. Serve while pancakes are still warm.
Just a note for the lovers of the the light, fluffy pancakes. These are not those! They are a nice hearty, heavier pancake. In fact, the one leftover was great cold with almond butter spread on it. It was almost like eating bread, and made a perfect after-walk snack.

I hit a produce sale at the grocery today!

I went to a convenient, but usually overpriced grocery store today to pick up some fresh produce for the upcoming week. They were having sales on lots of stuff today. I didn’t think I’d see those prices ’til spring. 98c/lb for zucchini in February is a surprise blessing. Look at this beautiful haul.

For under $30, I got the following:

  • 2 leeks
  • 1/2 container almond butter
  • 1 can organic navy beans
  • 5 sweet potatoes
  • 1 large lemon
  • 3 large onions
  • 2 pints blueberries
  • 1 lb strawberries
  • 5 (or maybe 6) zucchini
  • 1 orange bell pepper
  • 1 fuji apple
  • 1 bosc pear
  • 1 nectarine
  • 1/2 lb sliced baby bella mushrooms
  • a lot of baby spinach

The only thing better would be to get a bunch of local produce at the farmer’s market. But in the middle of winter, I take what I can get.

I haven’t had a really good crepe in years…

I can’t say that any more. I made the buckwheat crepes from Veganomicon, filled them with an apple-mango filling and drizzled the top with an almond sauce. Delish! If I keep cooking things like this for my family, I’m going to have to cook more often because yet again…no leftovers.

I’ve tried to make buckwheat crepes from a different recipe a few years ago. They tasted pretty good but were kinda strong. They had much more buckwheat in them, so they were also a little on the heavy side. That is not the case with these. They were milder and had the light consistency that “real” crepes are supposed to have.

To make the crepes, I substituted the following:

  • GF all purpose flour for the regular flour. Because the majority of the flour was buckwheat and chickpea, both naturally gluten free, this was a great substitution here.
  • Rice milk for soy milk
  • Coconut oil in place of margarine for brushing on the pan

Just 3 quick subs – easy, eh?

I also neglected to read the recipe last night or even before I made the filling so instead of refrigerating the batter for the hour or more as specified, I stuck the batter in the freezer for 15 minutes–worked like a charm. One note: I used the 1/2 cup measure per crepe and I only got 5 instead of the 8-10 stated in the recipe. There were 5 of us for breakfast, so it worked out ok. But I ended up eating mine as kind of chopped up mess, because I ate the first crepe which notoriously never turns out in one piece.

The other ones were lovely though.

The apple-mango filling came about because I had 3 apples that were starting to soften in a couple spots and some mango chunks in the freezer.

Apple-Mango Crepe Filling (for 5 large crepes)

3 red delicious apples, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
1 cup frozen mango chunks, cut into smaller chunks
1 tbsp canola oil
1 tbsp turbinado sugar
2 tsp arrowroot
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp each ground ginger, ground nutmeg

Preheat the oven to 350. Mix all of the above ingredients in a 2 quart casserole (or whatever glass dish it will fit in with a little stirring room) and bake for 50-60 minutes until the fruit is soft and a nice light syrup is forming. Stir every 20 minutes or so to keep the top fruit as juicy as the bottom.

I have this need to drizzle something on the top of crepes, so again, I just looked in my refrigerator to see what I could come up with. I didn’t think to measure for the almond syrup, but these are approximate: 1 tbsp all natural almond butter, 3 tbsp water (just thin to desired consistency), 1/2-1 tsp agave nectar. Mix and drizzle on the top of each filled crepe.

Serve warm. Actually, they’d probably be good cold too, but nobody let it sit around long enough to find out.

I did it! I did it! Vegan, GF Pastry Crust!!! And Beautiful Individual Apple Galettes

Note added October 15, 2010. This pie crust is good, but I have made a new and improved one!

Just take a few seconds and look at that galette! I finally made a vegan, gluten free pasty crust that is neither oily nor taste like sand. It tastes like pie crust :-) I asked my dad the all important question…is it good considering it’s gluten free, or is it good? The response was that it’s just good!

I basically followed the recipe for the Individual Heart Shaped Apple Galettes from Veganomicon, but obviously I didn’t make them heart shaped. I was having issues drawing just one heart with a knife. I didn’t have the patience to do 6. So I got out a saucer and traced around it with the knife. I only got 5 of them instead of 6, but with a slightly smaller circle, I could easily make 6. I also used closer to 2-3 tsp of apricot preserves per galette so that I would have a thin layer over the whole crust. Mine was a reduced sugar preserve from Trader Joes. I also replaced the regular brown sugar with turbinado sugar just because it’s what I have in the cupboard.

As lovely as the galettes are, and they are indeed lovely, for me the most important thing here is the crust.

Here goes…

  • 1 cup of this gf all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup garfava flour
  • 3/4 sorghum flour
  • 1/2 tsp xanthan gum
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil (2011 update: spectrum shortening works even better)
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 cup very cold water (you may end up needing more, but I did not)

Before beginning to mix the crust, refrigerate the coconut oil for about 15 minutes to get it more the consistency of shortening. Don’t leave it in the fridge too long or it will be hard. Trust me on this, I did it once – I could hardly cut through it with a knife.

In a medium bowl, using a whisk or a fork, mix the “all-purpose”, garfava, and sorghum flours with the xanthan gum. Add and mix the salt and sugar. Divide the coconut oil into thirds. Add 1/3 coconut oil in small chunks to the flour mixture and cut in. Repeat with each of the other two thirds. (You will cut in 3 times).

In a separate small bowl or measuring cup, mix the vinegar with the 1/2 cup of water. Again working in 3 batches, mix the water/vinegar mixture into the dry ingredients with a fork. The dough should hold together. If you need to add a little more water to achieve a good dough consistency, you can add up to 1/4 cup more.

Gather the dough into a ball and knead it until it all holds together. Form into a ball and flatten out a bit. Refrigerate for about 30 minutes. After 30 minutes it is ready to roll for the galettes or for a pie. Keep some of the gf all-purpose flour on hand for rolling. Flour the surface (my surface was wax paper taped to the counter) and the rolling pin and lightly flour the dough surface.

I haven’t baked a 2 crust pie in many years, but I would expect this crust would be plenty. It was even easy enough to work with that I think it might make a nice lattice crust. It didn’t stick, it rarely cracked and I could pick up the rounds of it and carry it over to the pan that was waiting to bake these beauties.

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