Recipes, Salty

Lentil Kebbe /كبّة عدس

Whenever I hear “kebbe”, I am immediately taken back to school days.

This is a pie-like dish that we prepare in Lebanon with a lot of meat. The traditional vegan version is made with pumpkin.

Since pumpkin isn’t always in season, and Kebbe is technically the birthday cake of savory dishes, I decided to try making it with lentils instead!

Here is the result, and I’m definitely a huge fan.
My whole family is actually; half the pan was gone in barely an hour.

You will unfortunately need a food processor for this.
Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it in the comments below!


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Ingredients (around a 10 inch/26 cm round pan)
For the external layers:

  • 1.25 cups red lentils
  • 1.25 cups brown (soft) bulgur
  • 1 big yellow/white onion (keep a small one aside too)
  • 1/2 to 3/4 tbsps mint leaves (you’ll start with 1/2, and might want to add 1/4 according to taste)
  • 2 tsps salt
  • 3/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 3/4 tsp pepper
  • 1/4 tsp 7 spices
  • 1/4 tsp cumin

For the filling:

  • 1 big onion
  • 1/2 cup brown lentils
  • 3 tsps raw pine nuts
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • a pinch of cumin
  • 1/4 tsp seven spices
  • 1/2 tsp summac
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 to 1.5 heaped tbsp pomegranate molasses

Preparation– bear with me, it’s a long one.

  1. Rinse and drain lentils
  2. Place lentils in 2 separate pots (one for brown, one red), and add enough water to reach the equivalent of double the lentils’ height.
  3. Bring to a boil, then cover to simmer.

Only turn off heat once:
a. the red lentils are completely soft, almost overcooked.
b. the brown lentils open up, and become extremely soft.
Tip: If the lentils haven’t reached that state and most of the water is evaporated, add more water.
This should take the red lentils around 20 min, and the brown lentils around 45 min (could go up to 1h).


While the lentils are cooking, let’s start with the surrounding layers:

  1. Cut one big onion in 4-5 pieces
  2. Rinse the bulgur and drain (there will always be some water you won’t be able to drain, that’s okay)
  3. Place onion pieces and bulgur in food processor
  4. Add 1/2 cup of mint leaves to the food processor first, then add the rest to taste
  5. Blend well
  6. Add spices, blend well, and taste. Add whatever spice/element you think is missing

Once the red lentils are cooked, drain them really well, then add to food processor and blend. Let this mixture rest.

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Once the brown lentils are ready, prepare the filling:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 200C/392F
  2. Drain the lentils and set aside
  3. Dice a big onion and fry in a pan on medium heat with some vegetable oil
  4. Add a pinch of 7 spices and cinnamon, mix
  5. In a separate pan, roast the pine nuts on low heat until golden: make sure to keep an eye on them at all times – move them around every once in awhile to keep them from burning
  6. Once onions begin to soften, add pine nuts and lentils with an extra tbsp of olive oil (vegetable oil works too)
  7. Allow them to fry for around 3-5 min

Use a wooden spoon to mix; you want the lentils to soften even more, and blend with the onion.

  • Add the rest of the spices, and the pomegranate molasses. Adjust to taste.

That’s it for the filling! Set aside.

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Check up on the layer mix in the food processor, it should be slightly dryer by now
Tip: if it’s still too liquid and sticky, try adding some more bulgur, blend well, and wait. If it’s too dry, add water and/or olive oil a tbsp at a time. You want it to be dry enough to be handled as a paste, but not too dry (breaking).

  1. Grease a 10inch/26cm round pan with some olive oil
  2. Take half of the mix from the food processor, and use your hands to create an even layer in the pan
    You want to create a slightly higher level along the borders to keep the filling inside
  3. Add filling mix, and spread evenly across the pan photo_2020-06-06_21-05-44
  4. Add second half of the mix from the food processor, and using your hands, create an upper layer without letting it mix with the filling. Close the borders.
  5. Decorate the upper layer with a fork or a knife, dividing it just like a pizza, and drizzle with some more olive oil

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Place in heated oven on the middle rack for 30-35 min, until bottom hardens.
Tip: keep it in oven for another 5-10 min; turn off bottom heat, and turn on the upper heat. This will ensure a crisp and golden surface.

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👩‍🍳How to Serve 👩‍🍳

I’m enjoying my Kebbe in the picture with some VG Laban (Lebanese yogurt). You can have it with a pomegranate salad, extra pomegranate molasses, or with Fattoush (traditional lebanese salad) as well.

Could be served warm or cold, according to your preference.


I really hope you have fun preparing this one. Please do not hesitate to DM me on IG or email me if you have any questions of trouble in the process !!

In the meantime, stay home, stay safe, and let’s survive this one delicious vegan recipe at a time.

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Recipes, Salty

Easy Curry

I grew up thinking that Curry is necessarily a spicy dish. I therefore never tried to eat or make it. Little did I know Curry is a whole world of colors, methods, hot-levels, and the range of possibilities is endless !

I finally tried making my own curry. This is a super easy recipe, but that could take up to an hour to prepare. 

It is NOT hot in any way, but feel free to add hot pepper powder/any other spice you’re a fond of. Make sure to do this in steps though. 

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it in the comments below!


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Ingredients (6 Servings):

  • 2 cups cauliflower florets
  • 1 cup diagonally sliced carrots (3 small or 2 medium sized carrots). 
  • 3 medium sized potatoes
  • 3/4 cup red lentils 
  • 1 big onion, sliced in half moons
  • 3 to 4 garlic cloves
  • 2 tbsps scoops vegetable butter OR 3 tbsps Vegetable Oil
  • 1 can full fat Coconut milk 
  • 2-4 tbsps yellow curry powder 
  • cubes of vegetable stock melted in 2 cups of water 
  • 1.5 tbsps maple syrup OR 1 tbsp  Sugar 
  • 1-3 tsps salt 

Optional:

  • Decrease the ratio of lentils to 1/2 cup and of carrots to 3/4 cup, and add 1.5 cups of sliced  button mushroom 
  • Option to [according to taste] add 1/4 tsp of paprika and 1/2 tsp of 7 spices
  • Add hot pepper/spicy curry 
  • Option to add roasted peanuts (roast some raw peanuts on a pan, then add to pot w few minutes before serving). 


Preparation: 

  1. Start by frying  the diced garlic cloves in the vegetable butter on low heat
  2. After 1-2 minutes, add onion slices, add vegetable oil if needed 
  3. Soak the lentils in some water on the side for 5-7 min. and rinse 
  4. 4-5 mins after having added the onions, add 2 tbsps of curry powder and stir a little 
  5. Add the lentils, stir, then all vegetables
  6. Add vegetable stock water + extra water to cover the vegetables 
  7. Bring to a boil, then cover and let simmer
  8. Once potatoes start to soften, add coconut milk
    Option to add 1/4 tsp of paprika, and 1/2 tsp 7 spices 
  9. Add first tsp of salt 
  10. Bring back to a boil, and cover to let it simmer
  11. Every 5-10 min., check if potatoes and carrots are cooked. This should take around 15-20 min. 
  12. Add maple syrup/sugar 
  13. Once veggies are cooked, lower heat, open lid, and taste the sauce. If it contains too much water and not enough of taste, add some curry powder, salt, and let it boil without a lid. 
    Keep doing this until you get the amount of sauce/taste you desire.
    You might want to add some coconut milk, according to taste. 

Tip: if you feel like the vegetables are overcooking and becoming too soft/crumbling, strain them in a bowl, put the sauce back on high heat and let the water evaporate as much as you want it to. 

 


👩‍🍳Serving 👩‍🍳

Once you get that on-point curry flavor, serve warm with jasmine, brown, white, or sticky rice on the side!

You can also have it with Naan bread/Pita bread/whatever bread you like. 


🐄🐔No animal was hurt preparing this dish, stay safe, stay home, and let’s survive this one recipe at a time!

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Recipes, Salty

Bean Patties

That’s right folks, after weeks of trials, I think I have finally mastered the art of a good bean VG patty. 

I enjoy my bean patties here with this cauliflower mash and a this onion reduction. But I would also highly recommend trying them in a Burger! 

Disclaimer: these patties DO NOT taste or feel like meat. So if you’re looking for that kind of texture, go for a beyond meat burger. 

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it in the comments below!


 

 

Ingredients (6 Patties):

Patties:

  • 400g of cooked Black/Red/Kidney Beans. I use kidney beans in this picture. photo_2020-05-21_18-29-55
  • 1.25 cups of diced button mushrooms. 
  • 1/4 tsp pepper or all ground spice
  • 2x 1/4 tsp cinnamon – portions will be used separately 
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp  onion powder
  • 1 tsp  paprika powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1/2 tsp dried parsley
  • 1/2 tsp  vegetable oil 
  • 4 tbsps breadcrumbs 
  • 2 to 2.5 tbsps all-purpose flour

Preparation: 

Patties:

  1. Fry diced mushrooms with some vegetable oil in a pan. Add 1/4 tsp of each pepper/all ground spice and cinnamon. 
  2. Make sure the beans are very soft; if in doubt, boil them in their can water for a few minutes on high heat. Rinse and Dry. 
  3. Mash beans by hand or in food processor 
  4. Mash cooked mushrooms in food processor, add bean mash and mix well. 

 

The next steps can be done by hand with a glove or in a food processor:photo_2020-05-21_18-33-43

5. Mix all ingredients in a bowl. Start with Spices, then move on to breadcrumbs, oil, and flour.
6. If the texture does not seem to hold, add some more flour. 
7. Taste and check if it’s missing anything to your taste. 

When satisfied with taste and texture, make a ball in your hand and flatten it. 

 

8. Heat 1 tbsp of oil on high heat in a pan 
9. Once oil is hot, add the patties. Fry on medium heat until the bottom is completely brown and crispy
10. If the pan is dried out after the first batch, wipe with a dried tissue, add some oil and start again.


👩‍🍳Serving 👩‍🍳

These patties go great with Guacamole! I would definitely recommend having them in a guac and veggie burger. You could also experiment with having them with VG mozzarella and mushrooms. 

Alternatively, I find the Onion reduction goes very well with a cauliflower mash. 


photo_2020-05-21_18-29-55


🐄🐔No animal was hurt preparing this dish, stay safe, stay home, and let’s survive this one recipe at a time!

Recipes, Sweet

Berry Smoothie and Muesli

This bowl is perfect to wake up, freshen up, and power up properly with summer heat right around the corner.

My favorite part is that it takes around 10 min to prepare AND will boost your body with lots of essential nutriments and vitamins in one go!

You can have this with milk, or with the Berry smoothie.

For more information on why I choose to have this almost every morning, check the nutrition facts at the bottom of this page!

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it in the comments below!


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Ingredients (1 bowl):

Muesli:

  • 1 tbsp of peeled and sliced almonds
  • 1 to 2 tbsps of Oat flakes/Rolled Oats – depending on how you like your muesli
  • 1 to 2 tbsps raw almonds cut in half
  • 1.5 tbsps crushed walnuts – no need to grind, just crush in your hand to get smaller pieces
  • 1 heaped tsp Cinnamon

Berry Smoothie:

  • 2 tbsps Oat flakes
  • 1/2 tbsp Flax Seeds
  • Around 8 to 10 medium and frozen blueberries
  • 4  frozen strawberries.
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup of plant milk. Check instructions.
  • 3-4 regular Ice cubes (optional)

Tip: if you don’t have time to freeze the fruits, you can place them as is, but you will need to add more ice. 


Preparation

Muesli:

  1. Place the ingredients in a pan
  2. Roast on medium to high heat, stirring every once in a while.

Roasting time depends on what you like; I like them close to burnt, but you might want to stop roasting as soon as they start browning. Taste a peeled almond, and see if this is how you like it. On High, I keep them around 3 min. On medium, they can take up to 5min.

Berry Smoothie:

  1. Grind the oats with the flax seeds very very well. Try and do this in a food processor rather than the smoothie maker.
  2. Add oat and flax seed mix, fruits, milk, and ice to smoothie maker. Start with half a cup of milk.
  3. Blend
  4.  If the fruits/ice aren’t blending well enough, you might need to add some more milk.

👩‍🍳Serving 👩‍🍳

Top your smoothie with the roasted muesli. Sprinkle Coconut powder and dark chocolate shreds! The chocolate will melt on top of the nuts and it will just taste heavenly.

Serve and eat immediately, otherwise the ice will melt and it won’t hold the nuts anymore.


🤓 Student Scheduling 🤓

Prepare a jar of the Muesli ahead; all you’ll need to do every morning is roast the mix for 5 min on high heat, then top with chocolate and desiccated coconut.

🌻 Vegan Boosts 🌻

I like to use Oat milk here to maximize the nutrition from oats, and get even more protein and iron. This is perfect before a workout.

For a lighter mix, go for Soy milk.

🇱🇧 Lebanese Shoppers 🇱🇧

Berries aren’t very cheap at the moment.

You can make your porridge without blueberries; get creative! If you like bananas for example, you can have a banana/strawberry mix.

You can also experiment with kiwis, spinach, orange, grapes, peach etc.

Just mix and match, and see what comes out of it!

🧘🏻‍♀️ Fitness and the P-word🧘🏻‍♀️

Here is just a glimpse at the list of nutrients you get in this mix:

Almonds:
Protein, Calcium, Vitamin E, Potassium, Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)

Oats:
Protein, Fiber, Iron, Vitamin B6

Flax seeds:
Flax seeds are part of my morning ritual. I have at least a tablespoon every morning.
Fiber, Magnesium, Calcium.

Walnuts:
Iron, Omega-3, Calcium

Blueberries:
Vitamin C, K, and antioxidants

Strawberries:
Vitamin C, Fiber, Potassium, anti-inflammatory benefits

Cinnamon:
Loaded with antioxidants, Cinnamon plays a big role in my diet. It has shown to prevent diabetes and cancer. It is also known to treat virus infections, and is sometimes used to treat infertility.

Cinnamon, Turmeric, Cumin, Paprika, and Garlic: I have one or two of these every single day.


🐄🐔No animal was hurt preparing this dish, stay safe, stay home, and let’s survive this one recipe at a time!

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Recipes, Salty

Asian Tofu (Sweet)

Day 18 of quarantine, it’s a sunny Sunday and I have a Tofu block to finish in my fridge.

I finally decide to face my fear of making Tofu that isn’t scrambled; I get inspired from Nora Cooks Vegan and a couple other blogs, and make my own little thing.

Let me know if you try it, tweak it, hate it or love it in the comments below!


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🍁 Ingredients (3-4 servings) 🍁

  • 1 Block Firm Tofu (280g) Press it if it wasn’t already.
  • 2 tbsps + 1 tbsp cornflouryou will use each separately
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup + 2 tbsps water
  • 10 tbsps Soy Sauce
  • 5 tbsps Teriyaki Sauce
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 garlic clove (diced)
  • 1 long spring onion or 2 small spring onions
  • 1/2 tsp Salt

🌱 Preparation🌱

Tofu

  1. Cut your tofu in thin slices, and absorb excess water with a kitchen towel
  2. Dice tofu into thin/rather small slices
  3. In a bowl, mix 1 tbsp of cornflour with olive oil and salt
  4. Take tofu pieces and using gloves, coat the pieces with the mix
  5. Place on parchment paper in a tray
  6. Bake tofu at 200C/392F for 15 min. Take out and flip on the other side. Bake for another 15 min.


Sauce

  1. Dice garlic and spring onion
  2. Fry on low heat with sesame seeds in vegetable oil
  3. Once the garlic/seeds start to brown, add Soy Sauce 1 tbsp at a time, allow to boil, then add another tbsp
  4. Add teriyaki with the tbsps of water
  5. Stir well
  6. Add sugar, stir well.
  7. In a bowl, add 1 tbsp of cornflour with 1 cup of water. Mix.
  8. Taste your sauce; add the garlic powder, and anything you think it might still need
  9. Add Cornflour water. Bring to a boil; it will then start to solidify, keep mixing until you get the consistency desired.


👩‍🍳Serving 👩‍🍳

  • Add tofu to sauce, soak for a few minutes
  • You can make jasmine rice or sticky rice with broccoli as a side! (picture)
  • Top your meal with more spring onions/sesame seeds

🇱🇧 Lebanese Shoppers 🇱🇧

Firm Tofu can be found in almost any big supermarket.


Stay home, stay safe, and let’s survive this one Recipe at a time!

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