Tag Archives: agave

Caramelized Onion & Kalamata Olive Focaccia

bread

I recently decided that I was going to limit my bread consumption. At least on a trial basis. For health reasons. Right.  So what did I immediately do? I pulled out the bread machine and cranked out several loaves. Telling myself I can’t have something to eat is always a guaranteed fail because I will inevitably immediately want whatever that is.

Last week I was looking through bread recipes and for some reason recalled this small bakery that operated out of an old movie theater that I would patronize during college. I would stop by in the mornings on my way to class and buy day old scones and bread. I remember they had amazing foccacia bread. I would take it home and devour it in a single sitting, savoring every bit.

This recipe reminds me of that bread. Instead of topping the bread with olives, I’ve incorporated them into the dough. They add a nice salty bite that goes well with the sweetness of the caramelized onions on top. This bread is great on it’s own but pairs nicely with soups and stews – I ate mine with a creamy tomato soup.

onions

Peel and halve your onion. Slice into thin strips. I used a mandoline on its thickest setting to get a nice even slice. In a frying pan, bring vegan butter and olive oil to a medium heat. Add onions, salt and stir to combine. You can also add a pinch of sugar to assist with the caramelization. Stir the onions occasionally. Leave them alone long enough to brown but not so long that they burn. This took me upwards of 15-20 minutes. Remove from pan and set aside once they’ve got a nice brown on them.

Mix together the warm water, active dry yeast and agave while onions are cooking. Set aside for 10 minutes.

Combine the flour, salt, Italian seasoning, garlic powder and pepper in a large bowl. Pour in the yeast mixture and stir until a dough ball forms. I used a 5 quart KitchenAid stand mixer with the dough hook attachment. The dough formed a nice ball after a few minutes on the lowest setting.

Transfer dough to a lightly greased bowl, giving it a few turns to coat it with olive oil. Cover with a towel and allow to rise in a warm area for 30-45 minutes. The dough should easily double in size during this time.

dough

Preheat oven to 450° and lightly grease a baking or cookie sheet. Punch the dough back down and move to a lightly floured surface. knead olives into dough until they’re evenly distributed. I had to add a little flour to compensate for the liquid from the olives.

dough

Roll the dough out on the baking sheet using a rolling pin or your fingers. Roughly form it into a 1/2 inch thick rectangle. Use knuckles or fingers to create depressions 1 inch apart across the top of the dough then top with caramelized onions.

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Reduce oven temperature to 375° before placing dough into the oven. Bake for 17-20 minutes until focaccia bread is golden brown. Remove and let cool slightly before serving. Enjoy.

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Caramelized Onion & Kalamata Olive Foccacia
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Ingredients
  1. 1 large onion
  2. 2 tablespoons vegan butter plus 1 tablespoon olive oil
  3. pinch of salt
  4. since of sugar (optional)
  5. 1 cup warm water
  6. 1 teaspoon agave
  7. 1 packet of active dry yeast (2-1/4 teaspoons)
  8. 2-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  9. 1 teaspoon salt
  10. 2-1/2 teaspoons Italian seasoning
  11. 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  12. 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  13. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  14. 1/4 cup kalamata olives, roughly chopped
Instructions
  1. Peel and half onion. Slice into thin strips. I used a mandoline on its thickest setting to get an even cut.
  2. Over medium heat, add the vegan butter and olive oil. Add sliced onions and sprinkle with a pinch of salt. You optionally add a pinch a sugar to assist with the caramelizing. Stir occasionally but allow onions to sit long enough to brown. Remove from pan and set aside.
  3. While the onions are caramelizing, mix together the warm water, yeast and agave. Allow to sit for 10 minutes.
  4. In a large bowl, mix together the dry dough ingredients. Add in the yeast mixture and combine until the dough forms a ball.
  5. Lightly grease a bowl with olive oil. Transfer dough ball to bowl and roll to coat with oil. Cover and let rise for 30-45 minutes in a warm spot. Dough should easily double in size.
  6. Preheat oven to 450° and lightly grease a baking or cookie sheet.
  7. Punch dough back down and move to a lightly floured surface. Add olives and knead until evenly distributed.
  8. Use a rolling pin or fingers to spread dough out into a rectangular shape on the baking sheet.
  9. Use knuckles or fingers to make indentations roughly 1 inch apart across the top of the dough and top with caramelized onions.
  10. Reduce oven temperature to 375° and bake for 17-20 minutes until focaccia bread is golden brown.
  11. Let cool slightly before serving.
Adapted from Simply Scratch
Adapted from Simply Scratch
Artisanal Vegan http://www.artisanalvegan.com/

 

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Teff Porridge with Dates & Walnuts

teff grains

My previous post was a review of my favorite Ethiopian restaurant. I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to piggyback that post with a recipe involving teff. Teff is an ancient grain from Africa as well as an important food source in Ethiopian cooking. The flat bread served with their cuisine, called injera, is made with teff flour. 

teff grains

The flour is fairly easy to come by in my area. The grains,  on the other hand, were difficult to find, so I ordered a few packages of Bob’s Red Mill whole grain teff from Amazon. The grains are surprisingly small – smaller than chia seeds – and remind me of little grains of brown sand. One serving dry is 1/4 cup; cooked it makes a pretty hardy, nutritionally dense food.

This recipe is similar to making oatmeal on the stove top except that the first step is to brown the grains until they begin to pop. You can top the porridge with pretty much anything you want. I favor dates but have also used apples, figs, and raisins. If it’s too thick, you can thin the porridge with a little water or soy milk. If you want to make your breakfast extra special, top it with full fat coconut milk or coconut whipped cream.

teff porridge

Teff Poridge with Dates & Walnuts
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Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup dry teff grains
  2. 1/2 tbsp vegan butter
  3. 1 1/2 cup water
  4. 1/2 cup dates, cut into pieces
  5. 2 tbsp agave
  6. Walnuts, chopped
  7. Salt, pinch
  8. Non-dairy milk (optional)
Instructions
  1. Heat a sauce pan over medium heat.
  2. Add teff grains, stir, and allow to toast for about 5 minutes or until grains begin to pop.
  3. Add water and butter. Stir well. Bring to a boil, cover, and cook for 10 minutes.
  4. Stir in dates, agave, and salt. Cover and continue to cook for an additional 5-10 minutes or until teff is tender and desired consistency.
  5. Remove heat and let cook for a few minutes. Spoon into bowls and and top with walnuts, additional agave, and non-dairy milk.
Notes
  1. Makes 2 servings.
Adapted from Bob's Red Mill
Adapted from Bob's Red Mill
Artisanal Vegan http://www.artisanalvegan.com/

Super Green Smoothie¹⁰

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I’ve never been great at math – not even good, actually. I remember I was in the slow math class in elementary school. I wasn’t the slowest of the group, though. I recall the teacher instructing us to count on our fingers and I was the fastest finger counter.

We once played a game where a math problem was written on the board and we went around the room challenging each other with the winner moving to the next round until everyone in the class had a change to compete. I was the last student standing, the winner. I still feel the pride from winning and in all honestly, I’m not entirely sure I actually won; I might have made it all up, but I believe I did and that’s all that matters.

With that being said, something to the “10th power” in relation to anything has got to be amazing, right? I thought I’d start with something super easy that I make several times a week after my runs and before heading off to work. I’ve made many variations of this over the past year or two and this seems to be the combination that I like best. It’s filling, tastes amazing, and is a great source of greens.

Super Green Smoothie

Ingredients:

1 cup non dairy milk  (I use soy but any will do.)
2 hand fulls of spinach
1 -2 springs of fresh mint
1 squeeze of agave
1 tbsp. hemp protein powder
1 tbsp. ground psyllium husk
1 tbsp. Trader Joe’s Very Green Powder
1 tsp. matcha powder
1 Frozen Banana
crushed ice

ingredients

Directions:

In a blender, add about a 1 cup milk with 2 handfuls of spinach and a spring of fresh mint. Blend until greens are liquified. Add in all other ingredients and continue blending until well incorporated.

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Add the banana (cut into pieces) and crushed ice into blender. How much iced depends on how thick you like the smoothie. Continue to blend and pour into large cup. I find that this recipe yields enough for 2 people, so add/subtract ingredients to your preferences.