Vegan Mayonnaise

This summer I was asked to do a luncheon salad that with a side of bread, would make a lunch for 30 people, and would be suitable for all by providing variety.  Three platters were offered, and some folks ate it like salad, while others made sandwiches from them.  We have a go-to salad platter which morphs easily to suit seasonal brunches, lunches and dinners.  I planned on using fresh shrimp and grilled chicken as the proteins, with a selection of veggies & fruits to complete the platters.  Thinking that I should add in some egg slices, I remembered that one of the daughters of this family was extremely allergic to eggs.  So, that was a no go.  I checked emails, and lists but could find no reference to this allergy, however I do know that she and her wife, and their little one, would most likely be in attendance, as they had never missed one of these family events.

For the dressing I had planned on doing a Green Goddess, as well as Fresh Blueberry Dressing, and Lemon Vinaigrette.  So, having decided that egg would NOT be part of these platters, I decided to try a tip I’d read about to make a egg-free (vegan) mayonnaise (mayonnaise being a very important part of Green Goddess dressing).

Using nut milk or soy milk in place of the egg, creates an extremely luscious “mayonnaise”.  As with mayonnaise, you can be creative with the flavourings, however this is a classically flavoured version.  The soy milk has lecithin in it naturally, which is found in eggs, which is why they are able to emulsify with oil.  Nut milks usually have soy, flax or sunflower lecithin added to them.  It’s the lecithin that is required!  When baking for Vegans, or those allergic to eggs, I make a flax egg out of 1 T ground raw flax and 2½ T lukewarm water.  Simply mix them together in a small bowl, and let rest for about 10 minutes. Use in the place of an egg.  Works like a charm. Continue reading

Sweet Potato & Bean Burritos

IMG_0002 (1)Our family has always had a “thing” for burritos. At least once a week they find their way into a meal; fish, beef, chicken, or veg, we love them all. This is our go-to recipe for our vegetarian version. They are full of nutrients and have the “more” quality that we’re always striving for. The recipe for the filling makes a fair amount, but lasts for up to a week in the fridge, and is great alongside rice or scrambled eggs. Continue reading

Black Bean & Quinoa Wraps

IMG_7238Earlier this spring I was catering for a large group, and was asked to provide a 50/50 split of vegetarian and meat sandwiches or wraps. This is so standard now, as many non-vegetarians simply don’t want to be eating meat at every turn.

The vegetarian wraps would need to be sustaining, not just filled with veggies & sauce. I decided to do a mix of beans & quinoa, which would keep these folks energized all afternoon. The resulting mixture made for one of the best wraps I’ve ever had, a good ratio of filling to wrap, with a nice blend of textures.IMG_7214 Continue reading

Bombay Chicken Wraps

IMG_7255Having wanted to design a recipe for an appetizer that didn’t include seafood, cheese, or deep-frying, I came up with a miniature chicken salad, that is usually served in tiny pastry cups, croustades. I have, on occasion, served it on tortilla chips. I’m not sure when I started making these, but do know that it was many years ago! Perhaps back when Mumbai was still Bombay, maybe the early nineties?

Recently I morphed the idea into wraps for a luncheon I was catering, they were gone in a flash. The flavours work just as well in a bigger format.

If you don’t have leftover cooked chicken to use, do what I do, buy a BBQ chicken from your grocer. Chill it, remove all the skin, fat & bones, and use all of the meat. This way you get a prefect mix of light and dark meat. It tends to be more economical than cooking even inexpensive fryer cuts. One standard BBQ chicken should give you about 650 grams of prepared meat, enough for 6 wraps.

The recipe shows amounts for 6 wraps, just use the appropriate portion if you are doing less. All of the ingredients can be prepared ahead of time, ready for assembly at your convenience. Continue reading