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7 Aug 2006

Vegan Sandwich Spreads

As Vegans we do not eat butter and many are worried about the hydrogenated oil or trans fatty acids in margarine, so we often have to rack our brains what to put on as a base when making sandwiches. There are actually many vegan spreads that can be used that are not only tasty but also healthy and nutritious.

For those who really want a substitute with the same type of flavor and texture there are a few commercial products which do fit that category and are safe to eat like Natucal All Vegan Buttery Spread which is 100% vegan, dairy-free, nonhydrogenated, trans fat free, no preservatives, gluten free and no artificial color or flavor.

If you prefer not to use a substitute there are many different spreads to buy or make yourself:
Avocado is a wonderful base, whether you will be eating it on it's own, with a salad topping, sliced tofu or vegan-cheese topping.
Humus (hummus) is available in many shops or if you have a good blender, very easy to make yourself. Blend one tin of chickpeas (garbanzo beans) with approx half a cup of extra virgin olive oil. You can also add garlic, lemon juice or cumin powder depending what you prefer. Great for any savory filling but if left plain a sweet filling can be added as well.
Eggplant (Brinjals) can be roasted in the oven for around half an hour. Scraped out and blended with onion, tomato or a little tomato paste, peppers or onion. Add a little virgin olive oil or lemon juice to get the right consistency.
Red Lentils can be cooked with your favorite spices like coriander, chili, cumin, ginger or curry powder then drained and blended.
Green Lentils can be cooked with thyme and yeast extract, drained and blended.
Tofu can be blended to make a spread with added fresh herbs, spring onion, gherkin, fresh spinach lightly steamed or raw.
Nut Butters can be made blending 2 cups raw nuts, like almonds or cashews, with a little extra virgin olive oil or any other cold pressed oil.

As you can see the ideas are endless and very simple.


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Recipes of the Day from Go Dairy-Free

Corn Buttery Spread

¼ cup Yellow Cornmeal
1 cup Water
cup Soy, Rice, or Oat Milk
2 teaspoons Lemon Juice
1 teaspoon Sea Salt
2 Tablespoons Unsweetened Flaked Coconut (check the bulk foods for an inexpensive option)

Cook the cornmeal and water in a saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring frequently, until it becomes “mushy”. Combine with remaining ingredients in a blender, and process until smooth.

Tofu Cream Cheese

1 cup Firm Silken Tofu
2 Tablespoons Olive or Vegetable Oil
3 Tablespoons Lemon Juice or 2 Tablespoons Vinegar
1Tablespoon Sugar
½ teaspoon Sea Salt

Combine all ingredients in a blender and process until smooth. Pour into a bowl and chill.

Pimento Dairy-Free Cheese
Adapted from the “Country Life Vegetarian Cookbook"

1½ cups Water
5 Tablespoons Agar Flakes
¾ cup Cashew Pieces, may substitute Sunflower Seeds
2 Tablespoons Sesame Seeds or 1 Tablespoon Tahini (see our Product List)
1¼ teaspoons Sea Salt
2 teaspoons Onion Powder
¼ teaspoon Garlic Powder
¼ cup Nutritional Yeast Flakes
½ cup Diced Red Pepper or Pimentos
2½ Tablespoons Lemon Juice

Put the first two ingredients into a small saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Place the agar mixture and the remaining ingredients in a blender. Blend all ingredients on high 1 - 2 minutes until creamy, stopping the blender once or twice to stir the contents and scrape down the sides. Pour the “cheese” into a mold and chill overnight. Un-mold the cheese and use sliced or shredded in place of commercially made cheese in your favorite recipes, or enjoy with crackers, breads, or fruit. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 7-10 days.

Variations: To make different flavors, fold in one of the following before pouring cheese into mold:

¾ cup finely Chopped Olives
2 Tablespoons Toasted Sesame Seeds
1½ Tablespoons Caraway Seeds
2 Tablespoons Dill Weed Powder
or 1 Tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons Onion Flakes and 2¼ teaspoons Dill.

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I have been dairy free for several years, and I started because I felt it was going to reduce my allergies, which it did, and help me lose weight, which it did.

Fran Drescher "The Nanny"


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10 comments:

KleoPatra said...

Go Fran! That's super cool. I am going to try the tofu cream cheese recipe for sure. I love spreads.

I am not sure if you have a margarine called "Nucoa" where you are, but that's the kind my mom uses and it's totally non-dairy...

Jackie said...

Unfortunately, although there are two vegan margs where I live they are made the same way as normal marg so they are not very healthy so I use them sparingly.

Barnze said...

Do you have pointy ears like spock unall?

Jackie said...

Not yet LOL

TW said...

The pimento not cheese sounds interesting since I am a pimento cheese addict but there is no mayo. How can it be such a thing without mayo?

Barnze said...

I eat most stuff me,Though i ain't fussed on inards!

Reeholio said...

I'm not vegan, but these recipes look yummy! - especially the spicy apple cake ;-)

Jonathan said...

Reading this made me hungry! I love vegan sandwiches -- here in Seattle there are several places to get them. They're a staple of my diet, for sure.

I'll have to try out your tofu cream cheese recipe.

Nice blog!

Scott Trimble said...

What about Tartex vegan pates?

Jackie said...

Never seen Tartex here.