Friday, June 20, 2014

One of a Kind Loaf

 Creating a unique and individualized vegetarian entree loaf is fun and simple with the following recipe. Each time you make it, the recipe will be unique and can use ingredients that you already have in your kitchen or that are available seasonally. This is a heart-healthy, low-calorie, and nutrient dense loaf. Tasty too! To create, simply choose the amount suggested for each ingredient type as shown below:

2 cups of legumes
  • cooked legumes of any variety such as: lentils, kidney beans, garbanzos, pinto beans, soybeans, or tofu, etc.
1 - 2 cups of grains
  • whole grain bread crumbs, rolled or quick oats, cooked brown rice or millet, Grape-Nuts cereal, crushed whole grain cereal flakes, whole grain cracker crumbs, whole grain croutons, etc.
1/2 cup chopped or ground nuts or seeds
  • almonds, cashews, pecans, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, etc.
1 1/2 cups liquid
  • broth from cooked vegetables, plain soy, nut, or grain milk, tomato juice or sauce, V8, etc.
1 Binder
  • 2 Tbsp. soy flour
  • 2 Tbsp. whole wheat flour
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp. gluten flour
  • 3 Tbsp. potato flour
  • 3 Tbsp. minute tapioca
  • 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal
  • 1/2 cup cooked "cream of wheat"
  • 2 Tbsp. soaked mung beans, blended, etc.
1/2 - 1 teaspoon of one or several Seasonings as desired (I always use at least double this recommendation; be generous with the seasonings!)
  • cumin, sweet basil, Italian seasoning, oregano, parsley flakes, rosemary, sage, Bill's Best Chicknish, McKay's Chicken-Like Seasoning, celery salt, garlic or onion powder, nutritional yeast flakes, salt, Vegex, Bragg's Liquid Aminos, Marmite
1 or more Vegetables
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 - 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 - 3 Tbsp. chopped pimiento
  • 3 - 5 stalks celery
  • 2/3 cup shredded carrots
  • 2/3 green beans or peas
Mix all the ingredients you selected together. Press into a sprayed loaf pan. Bake at 350 degrees F. for 45 minutes (or more if you prefer a darker loaf). Serve with a light savory or tomato gravy.

Leftover can be sliced and served in sandwiches or mashed for a spread (add olives, pickles, or Veganaise).

*Instead of baking as a casserole loaf, this recipe also makes delicious patties. Use a non-stick skillet with some extra-virgin olive oil and fry until crispy and golden.

**Although I make a vegan version of this recipe, you can add other ingredients that fit your likes and needs. Consider adding shredded cheese, eggs, or your favorite protein source.

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