For those of us in North America, October is the kickoff to the holiday season, what with Halloween and Canadian Thanksgiving (next Monday! Thanksgiving recipe roundup coming tomorrow!). In our house, the celebrations continue through mid-November and include my birthday, the HH’s birthday and Elsie’s birthday (in that order). Par-tay!
Well, last week many of my friends celebrated Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year. I noticed a flurry of tweets from Emily about her new ebook, The Triumph Wellness Vegan Jewish Holiday Ebook and commented on how interesting the recipes sounded to me–and Emily generously offered to send me a copy of the ebook for review! (Thanks, Emily).
I was immediately keen to try out her version of vegan chopped liver, since I’d fallen in love with a different recipe earlier in the year. I had fully intended to try, and post about, several of the recipes in the book so that anyone celebrating the Jewish New Year could possibly include them in their own celebrations, but sadly wasn’t able to get to them in time (where DO the days go these days??). But here’s the good news: as Emily notes on the ebook page, the recipes are suitable for other holidays besides Rosh Hashanah, so it’s not too late! And personally, I wouldn’t wait for a holiday to enjoy most of the recipes in this ebook.
I was surprised at how many of the recipes were actually ACD-friendly (or very easily adaptable). Apart from two dishes and one dessert, all the recipes are all gluten free and mostly sugar free (with lots that include stevia in the ingredient list). The ebook contains twelve recipes, including appetizer (this “chopped liver”), soup, main course and sides, salads, plus two desserts–all vegan. An entire holiday meal at the ready!
I couldn’t wait to try the chopped liver right off the bat. The cooking method (roasting the vegetables before puréeing them, rather than using steamed or canned beans, as I did with the last version) intrigued me, as did the addition of lentils in this recipe. The pâté came together very easily and looked eerily like real chopped liver. With the HH out running errands, I set up my photo and decided to wait for his return to have lunch together. Of course, I couldn’t resist trying just a wee nibble. . . it was rich, savory and slightly smoky, with a subtle sweetness from the roasted veggies and caramelized onions. I absolutely adored it, and literally had to restrain myself from finishing it before the HH returned home.
[Doesn’t this look delicious? No wonder the HH stole half my sandwich.]
I assembled a sandwich on quinoa sourdough, with a slather of dijon, some romaine and a drizzle of sriracha over top, assuming that the HH would rustle up his own meal (normally something like ham and cheese or salami on rye). As I munched away ( smacking my lips all the while), the HH asked if he could try a bite. Needless to say, he was smitten, too, and before I knew it, that bite turned into half my sandwich! “That was really good,” he mused. “You know, you could make this again.” (that’s HH code for, “I love the taste of this. Please do make this again.”).
Whether you celebrate the Jewish holidays or not, there’s a wealth of great recipes for you to try in this collection. Next up on my list are the rice-stuffed globe zucchini, black-eyed peas and pumpkin in tomato-curry sauce, spicy carrots with sweet silan (date syrup) glaze, marinated beets, and marzipan apple pie. In fact, I’m sure I’ll sneak in at least a few of these dishes at our own Thanksgiving feast this year–or, who knows?–maybe for Elsie’s birthday.
Mock Chopped Liver (adapted slightly from The Triumph Vegan Jewish Holiday Ebook, reprinted with the author’s permission)
This is a fabulous vegan pâté, whether or not you like chopped liver. It’s hearty and substantial yet not overly heavy or dense, and the smoky, savory flavors work beautifully in a sandwich or on crackers. I’ve added my own notes about the recipe in square brackets.
1 cup dry brown lentils
1 bay leaf
1 cube of mushroom bouillon OR 1 Tbsp dark miso
500 g (1 lb ) green beans, trimmed
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 tsp sea salt
3/4 cup walnuts
2 large onions, thinly sliced (3 cups)
Rinse lentils and pick to make sure there are no rocks or dirt clumps masquerading as lentils. Bring lentils, bay leaf, 4 cups water to a boil in medium saucepan [NOTE: I omitted the bouillon and miso, and used 4 cups/1 liter of vegetable broth instead of the water]. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover partially, and simmer 30 minutes, or until lentils are tender. If using the miso, stir it in at the end of the cooking period in order to preserve its taste and nutritional benefits. Drain, and remove bay leaf. Transfer to food processor.
Preheat oven to 220C (400F). Toss green beans and onion slices with the oil on a baking sheet and season with remaining salt. Roast 10 minutes. Stir, then roast 15 minutes more, or until browned and soft. [NOTE: my veggies took a lot longer to brown, upwards of 30 minutes.] Leave the oven on to toast the nuts. Transfer the veggies to food processor. In the same pan you roasted the veggies, spread the walnuts and return to oven for 3 to 4 minutes, or
until browned and fragrant. Watch carefully that they do not burn! Transfer to food processor.
Process pâté mixture until coarsely chopped. [NOTE: I processed until smooth, as I prefer my spreads to be smooth, and didn’t want any detectable pieces of green bean in mine!] Season with salt and pepper to taste, and transfer to serving bowl. Chill 2 hours or overnight before serving. This can be made up to 2 days ahead and actually gets better as it sits in the fridge.
“Mum, I think this mock chopped liver looks good and all, but if you’re going to sneak something in for my birthday, can’t it be the real stuff this year?”
Last Year at this Time: Flash in the Pan: Chocolate Almond Mousse (gluten-free; ACD all stages)
Three Years Ago: The Universe is Random (six things meme)
Never miss a recipe–or a comment from The Girls! Click here to subscribe to RickiHeller.com via email. You’ll get recipes as soon as they’re posted, plus cookbook updates and news about upcoming events! (“We love subscribers, Mum. . . almost as much as we love treats!”
[Disclaimer: this post may contain affiliate links. If you buy using these links, at no cost to you, I will earn a small commission from the sale.]