Tag Archive | beans

Vegan Chilli Cheese Fries – without the chilli, cheese or fries!

In our house chilli cheese fries don’t actually involve any chilli, cheese, or fries!

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Being vegan we don’t eat cheese. I’m intolerant to capsaicin (not quite allergic but close) so I make everything – even chilli beans – with little to no chilli. And finally potato wedges are marginally more healthy than the traditional fry style chips (in general the larger the thing being fried or coated in oil the less fat it absorbs).

So these are made with mild ‘chilli’ beans, a vegan cheesy sauce and oven baked wedges. They’re still delicious and certainly not a health food!

Wedges

Cook wedges. If using frozen pre-prepared ones follow packet directions (normally around 20 minutes at 200ºc).

To make from scratch:

Put potatoes in a plastic or paper bag along with 1/4 cup of flour, 1 tsp garlic salt, 1 tsp paprika, and 1 tsp of arrowroot powder (tapioca flour). Shake to coat.

Cook in a baking tray or lasagne dish for 35 minutes at 195ºc.

Not-chilli Beans

  • 1 tin refried black beans (or 1.5 cups homemade)
  • 140g tomato paste
  • 1 Tblsp seasoned salt
  • 1 tsp taco seasoning

Mix in a microwave safe bowl (or just use a saucepan for stove top) then microwave (or heat on stove top) for 4 minutes. Mix again and set aside.

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Cheesy Sauce

I used the Angel Foods Cherub Cheesey Sauce mix made to directions with 2.5 cups of soy milk and 1/4 cup of hulled tahini.

Angel Foods Cheesey Sauce

Although if I was feeling less lazy I could have made some of my own cheesy bechamel.

Assemble!

Put wedges in a bowl or plate, add 2/3 cup of non-chilli beans, top with 3/4 cup of cheesey sauce. Devour.

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Mustard and Bean Pies

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Ingredients

(makes 6 half pies or 3 full sized pies)

  • 6 sheets of vegan pastry (or 1.5 batches of home made wholemeal pastry)
  • 2 tins of beans (or 4 cups of cooked beans) – e.g. kidney beans and/or mixed beans
  • 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables – use the diced varieties, I use Coles ‘Australian Mix’ which is diced potato, peas, carrot, and broccoli.
  • 1 medium onion, sliced or diced
  • 2 stems of celery, diced
  • 2 Tbls of olive oil
  • 2 Tbl of flour
  • 2 to 3 cups soy or nut milk
  • 3 Tbl of mustard
  • 1/2 tsp cracked pepper
  • 2 Tbls savoury yeast flakes (nutritional yeast)

Method

Defrost pastry. Pre-heat oven to 180ºc (355ºf) and line and grease two cookie sheets (or three pie dishes)

Add veggie mix and drained beans to a large bowl and leave to defrost while cooking the sauce.

Heat oil in a medium saucepan. Add onion and fry until browning. Add celery and cook until bright.

Add flour and mix thoroughly. Then slowly add milk (in 1/2 cup amounts) and blend slowly allowing to thicken before adding a further amount of milk. Once the sauce has a thick consistency add the mustard, yeast flakes, and pepper. Turn off the heat and continue to stir until fully mixed.

Once cooked and while still warm, add the sauce to the bowl with the beans and vegetables and stir through.

Assemble pies according to your preferred method. To assemble half pies take a single sheet of pastry and place on greased cooking sheet. Add enough filling mixture to cover half of the sheet with a 2.5 cm (1 inch) border.

Mustard and bean pie filling

Fold over the other half to cover the filling. Seal the edges firmly ensuring that top and bottom are melded into each other. Then fold the edges to create a crust and press down again. Cut three or four small vents into the top of the pie with a sharp knife.

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Cook pies for 20 minutes at 180ºc until golden.

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Enjoy!

Meatless Bean and Gluten Balls (+ Creamy Med Pasta Sauce)

Meatless Bean and Gluten Balls

Ingredients

(makes 32 large bean balls – halve for smaller balls)

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  • 2 tins (or 4 cups) cooked beans (I use kidney and borlotti or three bean mix)
  • 2 cups greens (spinach or silverbeet etc) – optional
  • 1 brown onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup diced celery (around 4 or 5 stems)
  • 1 medium carrot, chopped (grated if your food processor isn’t very powerful)
  • 2 tomatoes, chopped
  • Egg replacer for 2 eggs
  • Mixed herbs, salt and pepper – to taste
  • 2 cups gluten flour (vital wheat gluten)
  • Breadcrumbs to coat (about 1/2 cup at most)

Method

Blend beans, greens, onion, celery, carrot and egg replacer (and any spices or flavourings) in a food processor until smooth and paste like.

Add the paste to a large mixing bowl. Then slowly mix in the gluten flour (vital wheat gluten). This will become a very stiff dough-like mixture and will become hard to mix near the end so use a sturdy spoon or spatula.

Bean Ball Dough

Green Bean Ball Dough

 

Hand kneed dough lightly. Cut the dough into 32 even chunks with a knife – I usually slice it into about 4 to 6 strips/logs and then cut those into smaller chunks.

Roll into balls and coat in breadcrumbs.

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Rolled Green Bean Balls

Line and grease a cookie tray or large baking dish. Cover in foil and cook for 15 to 20 minutes at 180ºc then cook uncovered for a further 15 minutes to brown.

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Cooked Bean Balls

Can be served with pasta and sauce (e.g. Creamy Mediterranean Pasta Sauce below) OR with mashed veggies and gravy.

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Creamy Mediterranean Pasta Sauce

Ingredients

  • 1 Tbl olive oil
  • 1 Tbl crushed garlic
  • 1 medium brown onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup whole kalamata olives
  • 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes in oil, sliced
  • About 1/2 cup of red wine vinegar, OR red wine, OR half-and-half balsamic vinegar and water or apple juice – to deglaze
  • 1 tin crushed tomatoes (or 2 cups fresh diced tomatoes slightly puréed in a food processor or blender)
  • 140g, one tin or pottle, of tomato paste (or 2 Tbls of tomato powder)
  • 160g, one small tin, low fat coconut milk
  • Herbs and spices (I use mountain pepper, lemon myrtle, smoked salt, mixed herbs, and a pinch of cajun spice)

Method

Heat the oil in a heavy based sauce pan. Fry the onion and garlic until brown.

Deglaze the pan with some of the red wine vinegar. Cook until partially absorbed.

Add olives and sundried tomatoes. Mix through then add more vinegar or wine. Heat for a few minutes.

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Add diced tomatoes, tomato paste and spices. Mix thoroughly and heat for 2 to 5 minutes.

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1 minute before serving mix through the coconut milk.

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Serve with cooked spaghetti with or without added bean balls.

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Quinoa and Beans with Grilled Asparagus

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This is super simple but looks impressive because of all the colour.

The asparagus was just grilled in a sandwich press then sprinkled with himalayan rock salt and cracked pepper. I then used left over creamy white sauce from last night’s Creamy Spinach Pasta.

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Quinoa Method:

Cook 1 cup of red and white quinoa in a rice cooker with 2 cups of veggie stock (or to packet directions).

  1.  Heat 1 tablespoon of macadamia or similar oil in a heavy bottomed pan to medium-high heat.
  2. Lightly fry three diced stems of celery until they are bright green.
  3. Add 1 drained tin of red kidney beans. Beans and Celery
  4. Once almost cooked turn off rice cooker and add quinoa to the pan.Quinoa in the pan
  5. Mix and deglaze with a little white wine. Wine and quinoa

Serve – in this case with grilled asparagus on homemade rolls (with toffuti) topped with left over golden bechamel with extra lemon. Also nice as a base to serve grilled tofu or tempeh.Quinoa & Asparagus 2

Slow Cooked Bean Soup

Ultimate Bean Soup

This is a much more ‘homey’ soup than my green soup but it is still quite healthy. At least until I start turning it into other things that is!

I use McKenzies Italian Style Soup Mix however it can be sub’d with any mixture of 1 3rd beans, 1 3rd lentils and 1 3rd mixed split peas and barley.

Bean Soup

Ingredients

  • 1 375g pack McKenzies Italian Style Soup Mix (or 2 cups dried beans, lentils and split peas).
  • 1 tin chopped tomatoes (or 2 cups fresh diced tomatoes).
  • 4 tsps vegan chicken style stock powder or other stock concentrate equivalent to at least 1 litre of stock.
  • About 400g Mirepoix – usually this means equal parts diced celery, carrot and onion (I add leak if I make my own) which you can prep and freeze or it is sold as Ready to Cook Vegetable Mix at Woolworths in Australia and it is normally sold frozen or fresh anywhere that French cooking is common.
  • 3 to 6 cloves garlic OR 2 tsps of garlic paste OR all cloves from a whole roasted garlic (peeled).
  • 1 small cube of ginger minced OR 1 tsp of ginger paste.
  • Herbs and spices to taste – I usually use a tsp of dried mixed herbs, a big pinch of smoked paprika, a bay leaf, a sprig of fresh rosemary, a sprinkling of onion or garlic salt, lots of cracked pepper. If I have it fresh I will add diced sage or coriander (aka cilantro) but neither of these dry, and sometimes a pinch of dried marjoram too.
  • Water.

Method

It is then as easy as adding everything to the slow cooker (aka crock-pot) and topping it up to the max line with water (I use the tin for the tomatoes to add it and it is normally around 3 to 4 tins of water) , stir well, cook for 6 to 8 hours. I often put this on before going to work.

Variant options for turning leftover soup into fritters or bean loaf can be found here.

What to do with SO much soup!?

I have a slow cooker. I love soups and stews and I use it a lot. However, it makes an awful lot of soup or stew for two people. The other day I made far too much of my Ultimate Bean Soup (it is half soup half stew and all deliciousness). While it was great for dinner my poor husband, having already been inundated with Green Soup for lunch all week prior, was getting a bit sick of soup.  So I came up with two alternatives to thicken up and vary my abundance of bean-y sloushy stuff.

Bean Soup Fritters

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Ingredients

  • 2 or 3 tsp corn flour (aka corn starch) mixed with 3 Tbls (60 ml) of water.
  • 1/2 cup gluten flour (aka vital wheat gluten)
  • 1 cup plain wholemeal flour.
  • 1 cup bread crumbs.
  • 1/2 cup sesame seeds.
  • Lots of left over bean soup – the above amounts are based on about 1.5 litres of soup.
  • More flour as needed.
  • Oil to fry (I use rice bran or canola)

Method

All of the ingredients are estimates – it depends how much soup you actually want to fritterise. The corn starch mix should not really vary though because it is your binder and the amount of corn starch to water matters more in relation to the amount of thickening action that you want rather than the quantity of fritters.

Add the corn starch mixture to the soup. Mix the gluten flour and wholemeal flour together separately then add to the soup and stir in thoroughly. Add the bread crumbs and the sesame seeds and mix in. Now you need to stir your mixture thoroughly. It should be reasonably thick and quite ‘gloopy’. You will cook a small test fritter and if it seems too thin and not sticky enough then add a little more flour.

Heat your oil in a fry pan until it is very hot – you want it to be about a 1/2 cm deep. Add the fritter mix in large spoonfuls (I use a single large traditional table spoon but you can always just do it in two spoonfuls  per fritter if you only have the standard dessert or soup spoons which are sold with cutlery sets). Press it down a little and watch the edges of the fritter. When the mixture thickens in the pan and starts to look tacky and almost golden at the very edges then you can flip it and cook the other side.

Serve with mixed salad leaves, hummus, and lemon juice.

Leftover Bean Loaf

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This one is exactly as above except that instead of frying it you add about a cup more bread crumbs and put it in a greased loaf tin or cooking dish. Top with more crumbs and sesame seeds. Then cook the loaf on 180°c for 35 to 45 minutes – until a fork stuck into the loaf comes out clean.

Serve in slices with cooked potatoes, steamed broccoli, peas and green beans, and  mushroom gravy.