Category: almonds

vegan Kaab al Ghazal / Cornes de Gazelle (Moro…

vegan Kaab al Ghazal / Cornes de Gazelle (Moroccan almond-paste-filled cookies)

recipe under the cut!

INGREDIENTS:

for the dough:

  • 2 cups (270g) all-purpose flour (measured by spooning flour gently into a measuring cup and levelling it off)
  • 2 tbsp water
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • ¼ cup plus 2 tbsp melted vegan margarine
  • 2 tbsp orange blossom water

for the almond paste:

  • 1 ½ cup (225g) almonds
  • ½ cup (50g) sugar
  • 2 tbsp orange blossom water
  • ¼ tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp melted vegan margarine

INSTRUCTIONS

for the dough:

1. add all ingredients for the dough into a large bowl. you should get a soft dough that just comes together without being sticky–add more water if necessary.

2. knead the dough for 10-20 minutes until it is smooth and elastic.

for the almond paste:

1. blanch the almonds by placing them in boiling water for about a minute, then gently pinching each one to remove its skin. dry thoroughly.

2. toast the almonds in a large pan over medium heat for a couple minutes until a shade darker.

3. grind almonds and remaining ingredients in a food processor or grinder until a smooth paste results.

to assemble the cookies:

1. take a portion of the dough (covering the dough that you’re not using so that it doesn’t dry out) and roll it out–it should be very thin but not translucent.

2. place about a tablespoon of almond paste on the dough in roughly the size and shape of a finger.

image

3. fold the dough over the filling and press firmly to seal. form into a sharply curving crescent shape that is slightly narrower at the top than at the bottom. the direction from which you folded the dough should form the inside of the curve.

image

4. use a pastry wheel to cut the cookie from the remaining dough. repeat until all of the dough has been used.

image

5. place cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. prick a few holes in the top of each cookie with a fork or toothpick.

6. bake at 350F (175C) for 15-20 minutes, until a shade darker (be careful not to overcook them or they will be too tough–they shouldn’t be golden brown!)

the name of this cookie means “gazelle horns” or (in French) “gazelle ankles.” Kaab al Ghazal are commonly served with Moroccan mint tea. they may be dipped in orange blossom water and then covered in sugar, in which case they’re called Kaab al Ghazal M’fenned.

vegan “beef” pastilla (Moroccan sweet and savo…

vegan “beef” pastilla (Moroccan sweet and savoury pie with almonds)

recipe under the cut!

INGREDIENTS:

for the warqa dough:

  • 1 ¾ cup bread flour
  • ¼ cup semolina flour / durum flour (or substitute all-purpose flour)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ¾ cup water

for the savoury filling:

  • 2 bags of gardein beefless tips
  • 1 white onion, chopped
  • about ¼ cup olive oil
  • 2 ½ tsp black pepper
  • 2 tsp cumin
  • 1 cinnamon stick, or 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 3 Follow Your Heart VeganEggs (optional)

for the almond filling:

  • 1 ½ cup almonds
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp orange blossom water

to form the pastilla:

  • ¼ cup vegan margarine, melted

for the topping:

  • additional almonds
  • powdered sugar
  • ground cinnamon

INSTRUCTIONS:

for the warqa:

1. add flours and salt to a food processor and pulse a few times to sift.

2. add the wet ingredients and process on low for 1-2 minutes, until you get a smooth batter.

image

3. refrigerate the batter for at least two hours, or overnight.

4. bring a few inches of water to a fast boil in a large pot, and place a large, nonstick pan over the pot, tying it with kitchen string if necessary–this will help to evenly distribute heat and prevent the warqa from drying out. allow the pan to heat for a few minutes.

5. using a pastry brush, brush a thin layer of batter onto the pan in large, circular strokes, filling the entire pan. carefully apply a second layer to any bare spots (but don’t worry about small holes or feathery edges).

6. cook until the warqa becomes opaque and the edges start to curl, about 2 minutes. loosen the edges of the dough with a spatula and peel the dough off of the pan using your hands.

image

7. flip the dough over onto a plate covered with a paper towel, and lay another paper towel on top of it. repeat, stacking the sheets of dough on top of each other, until you’ve used all of the batter.

for the savoury filling:

1. defrost the frozen beefless tips by placing the bags in a larger bowl filled with hot water.

2. mix the oil and spices in a large bowl and coat the beefless tips with the mixture. refrigerate for 1-2 hours to marinate.

3. cut beefless tips in half or thirds, as desired.

4. heat a few tablespoons of olive oil in a large pan over medium heat until water splashed in the pan sizzles. add chopped onion and cook for about 30 seconds to flavour the oil.

5. add beefless tips and marinade and cook for 4-6 minutes, stirring often, until almost done (don’t overcook them or they’ll become tough!). set aside.

6. prepare and scramble three VeganEggs according to package directions (optional).

for the almond filling:

1. blanch the almonds by boiling them in water for about a minute, emptying them into a colander and rinsing with cool water, and gently pinching the skins to remove them.

2. fill a large pan with 1-2 cm of vegetable oil and heat until sizzling. fry the almonds for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until golden brown. set aside some almonds for a topping, if desired.

3. pulse almonds, sugar, cinnamon, and orange blossom water a few times in a food processor until you get coarse crumbs.

forming the pastilla:

1. place one sheet of warqa in the bottom of a pie pan and brush with melted margarine. place 4-5 more sheets around the pan so that they cover all of the sides and hang over the edge, brushing each one with more melted margarine. add 2 more sheets of warqa in the middle, brushing each with margarine.

image

2. place the savoury filling in the pie, making sure that it’s even and spread all the way to the edges.

image

3. (optional): add another sheet or two of warqa on top of the savoury filling and brush with margarine.

4. spread the almond filling over the warqa, making sure that it’s even and spread all the way to the edges.

image

5. add another 2-3 sheets of warqa, brushing each with margarine, and fold the excess inwards.

image

6. fold the excess warqa around the sides of the pan inwards, brushing each sheet with more melted margarine.

image

7. cover the pastilla with 1-2 more sheets of warqa, tucking the excess into the sides of the pie pan. brush the entire thing with more margarine to seal.

8. bake on the center rack of an oven at 400F for about 40 minutes, until warqa is golden brown and crisp. allow to cool slightly before removing from pan.

image

to decorate:

1. cover the surface of the finished pastilla with powdered sugar, ground cinnamon, and fried almonds as desired. try doing an image search for “Moroccan pastilla” or “pastilla marocaine” for decoration ideas.

cut carefully and serve! pastilla is often eaten with harissa, a North African hot sauce made with red peppers.

vegan “beef” seffa madfounarecipe under the cu…

vegan “beef” seffa madfouna

recipe under the cut!

seffa madfouna is a Moroccan main dish that consists of a meat such as chicken, lamb, or beef buried (“madfouna”) in a dome of couscous or vermicelli that’s been sweetened with powdered sugar, golden raisins, and butter. without the meat, the dish is called “seffa” and is served as a dessert.

INGREDIENTS

for the seffa:

  • 1lb (450g) broken vermicelli (you can find this in a Middle Eastern or comparable store)
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 8 cups (1 litre) water
  • 1 fresh lemon, halved, or 3 tbsp lemon juice
  • ½ tsp orange blossom water
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • ¾ cup golden raisins, soaked in warm water
  • 2 tbsp vegan margarine
  • ¼ cup powdered sugar, or to taste

for the meat:

  • 2 packs Gardein beefless tips
  • 2 tsp ras el hanout
  • 2 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper or whole black peppercorns, toasted and ground
  • ½ tsp ground white pepper

    or whole white peppercorns, toasted and ground

  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 large pinch saffron, toasted
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon, or 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 large yellow onions, chopped
  • 1/3 cup olive oil

to top:

  • 1 cup almonds
  • 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • 2 tsp orange blossom water
  • about ½ cup dried dates (optional)
  • additional powdered sugar and ground cinnamon

INSTRUCTIONS:

steaming the seffa:

the vermicelli will need to be steamed three or four times.

1. place vermicelli in a large bowl and, using your hands, coat evenly with oil.

2. boil about 8 cups of water, lemon, orange blossom water, and cinnamon in the bottom of a couscoussier, or in a large pot.

3. reduce heat to medium-low and add vermicelli in the top of your couscoussier, or in a strainer or colander that fits inside the pot without touching the water. steam for about 20 minutes, until you see the edges of the broken vermicelli begin to point upwards.

image
image

[before and after steaming]

4. return the vermicelli to the bowl and add about 1 cup (250ml) warm, salted water, using your hands or a fork to ensure that the water is evenly distributed. allow the vermicelli to absorb the water for about 10 minutes.

5. return the vermicelli to the couscoussier and steam for another 20 minutes, until the edges begin to point upwards. this is the second steaming.

6. return the vermicelli to the bowl and add 1/3 to ½

(80 – 120ml) cup of water, depending on how dry the pasta feels. it should be almost tender enough to eat.

7. add in the golden raisins. return the vermicelli to the couscoussier and steam for another 20 minutes 

(you may need to add more water). this is the third steaming.

image

8. repeat this process again if the vermicelli is still not tender enough to eat. it won’t have the same texture as cooked noodles but it shouldn’t be hard in the center.

9. add margarine and sisugar, making sure they’re evenly incorporated.

preparing the meat:

1. defrost the beefless tips in a bowl filled with warm water until no longer frozen.

2. mix the oil with the ras el hanout, ground ginger, black pepper, white pepper, salt, cinnamon (if using ground) and saffron. toss beefless tips in spiced oil, leaving aside about 3 tbsp for cooking the onions. set beef in the fridge to marinate.

3. heat the remainder of the spiced oil over medium heat and add onions, beefless tips, and cinnamon (if using a stick). cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent and the tips are fully cooked. set aside.

image

preparing the toppings:

1. blanch the almonds by leaving them in boiling water for about a minute, rinsing them in cool water, and gently removing their skins. dry thoroughly.

2. heat enough oil to cover the almonds in a pan over medium-low heat. an almond dropped into the oil should cause a bubble to form–if the oil sputters, it’s too hot. fry almonds, stirring constantly, until golden brown. allow to cool.

3. grind ½ cup of fried almonds in a food processor with 2 tbsp sugar and 2 tsp orange blossom water until coarse crumbs form. set aside.

assembling the dish:

1. spread a layer of vermicelli on the bottom of a large serving dish. top with a mound of beefless tips in a rough dome shape.

image

2. pile the rest of the vermicelli on top of the beefless tips until they are fully covered, completing the dome.

3. top with fried almonds, almond mixture, ground cinnamon, powdered sugar, and dates as desired.

vegan & gluten-free cinnamon / almond / or…

vegan & gluten-free cinnamon / almond / orange Moroccan ghriba

recipe under the cut!

ingredients:

  • 2 cups almond meal (220g)
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar (90g)
  • zest of 1 orange
  • pinch of salt
  • ½ tbsp melted non-dairy margarine
  • 2 tsp orange blossom water
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • additional powdered sugar, to top
  • about 2 tsp ground cinnamon, to top
  • whole almonds, to top

instructions:

1. mix almond meal, powdered sugar, orange zest, and salt in a large bowl. add wet ingredients and knead until combined (it may take a few minutes for all of the almond meal to be incorporated). wrap and refrigerate for about an hour.

2. line a baking sheet with parchment paper. shape dough into small balls about an inch in diameter and flatten slightly. roll each cookie in powdered sugar, then top with a pinch of ground cinnamon and an almond.

3. bake for 10-15 minutes at 350 F (175 C), until firm to the touch.

vegan badambura (Azerbaijani almond-filled puff pastry…

vegan badambura (Azerbaijani almond-filled puff pastry cookies)

recipe under the cut!

makes about 20 cookies

INGREDIENTS:

for the dough:

  • 1 cup warm soy milk

  • ½ cup sugar
  • 2 tsp active dry yeast
  • 6 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract (optional)
  • 1 cup melted vegan margarine 

  • pinch of salt
  • 5 – 5 ¼ cups flour

for the filling:

  • 1 cup whole almonds, or 1 ¼ cup ground almonds
  • 1 ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cardamom, or about 6 pods
  • 1 tsp ground coriander, or 1 ¼ tsp coriander seeds

to assemble the cookies:

  • about 3 tbsp melted margarine
  • powdered sugar for topping (optional)

INSTRUCTIONS:

for the dough:

1. dissolve the sugar and yeast in the warm soy milk, then add in the rest of the liquid ingredients and salt.

2. add in flour until you get a smooth, non-sticky dough. knead the dough until it is soft and elastic.

image

3. place dough in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap to avoid drying out. let rise for 1-2 hours in a warm, dark place.

for the filling:

1. if using whole almonds: blanch the almonds by boiling them for about a minute, then rinsing with cool water and gently pinching each almond to remove its skin. pat with a towel to dry and toast in an ungreased pan over medium heat for about 10 minutes until they are a light golden-brown colour, or bake at 350F for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. grind the almonds in a food processor until you achieve a rough crumb texture.

2. if using whole spices: toast cardamom pods and coriander seeds over medium heat in an ungreased pan for about a minute until fragrant and slightly darker. remove cardamom seeds from their pods and grind them with coriander seeds in a spice mill.

3. mix ground almonds, ground spices, and sugar in a medium bowl.

to assemble the cookies:

1. divide the dough into six equal pieces. roll one out into a large rectangle, leaving the other five covered to prevent them from drying out. the dough should be thin enough to be transparent. (you may need to occasionally stretch out the corners with your hands to maintain a rectangle shape.)

2. brush the dough with melted margarine using your hands or a pastry brush. roll out another piece of dough to the same size, and lay it over the top of the first rectangle of dough. repeat with the remaining four pieces of dough, brushing each one with melted margarine.

image

3. roll the layers of dough together lengthwise very tightly–the rolled layers are going to be what holds the filling in the cookies!

4. using a very sharp knife, cut a ~1″ chunk of dough off the edge of the roll of dough. place it down sideways on your work surface and gently press down in the center to form a pocket for the filling.

image

5. fill the cookie with 1 tbsp of the almond filling, then bring the edges of the cookie together and press tightly to seal. you can twist the excess dough together (like the edges of a Cornish pastry), or fold them down.

image

6. place the cookie on a baking sheet with the folded edge down. repeat until you run out of dough!

7. bake at 350F for 15-20 minutes, until the bottoms of the cookies are golden brown. dust with powdered sugar immediately before serving.

badambura are usually eaten during the spring holiday Novruz, Azerbaijani’s new year.

vegetable pastilla (Moroccan sweet and savoury pie with squash,…

vegetable pastilla (Moroccan sweet and savoury pie with squash, chickpeas, and almonds)

recipe under the cut!

I’ve substituted the typical pigeon or chicken with zucchini, yellow squash, and chickpeas in this vegan recipe. for the shell you’ll need to make warqa dough (which isn’t really commercially available outside of Morocco), or you can substitute store-bought phyllo dough, which isn’t quite as thin and crispy but will do the trick.

INGREDIENTS

for the warqa dough:

  • 1 ¾ cup high-gluten bread flour
  • ¼ cup semolina flour / durum flour (or substitute all-purpose flour)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp lemon juice
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 ¾ cup water

savoury filling:

  • 1 zucchini
  • 1 yellow squash
  • 3 tbsp olive oil 
  • 1 stick of cinnmaon, or 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 ¼ tsp black peppercorns, or 1 tsp black pepper
  • 1 tsp coriander seeds, or ¾ tsp ground coriander
  • 1 tsp cumin seeds, or ¾ tsp ground cumin
  • ¾ tsp ground paprika
  • 1 pinch saffron threads
  • 1 tbsp plus 1 tsp ras el hanout spice mix
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 large yellow onion, diced
  • 4-5 cloves of garlic, diced
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 inch of fresh ginger (or 2 tsp ground ginger)
  • ½ cup dried chickpeas soaked overnight, or 1 can chickpeas
  • 3 vegan eggs from Follow Your Heart (optional)
  • 1 small bouquet of parsley, diced
  • 1 small bouquet of cilantro, diced

almond filling:

  • 1 ½ cup almonds
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • ¼ cup plus 1 tbsp granulated sugar
  • 1 tbsp orange blossom water

to form the pastilla:

  • ¼ cup vegan margarine, melted

topping:

  • additional almonds (optional)
  • about 2 tbsp powdered sugar
  • about 1 tbsp ground cinnamon

INSTRUCTIONS:

for the warqa:

1. add flours and salt to a food processor and pulse a few times to sift.

2. add the wet ingredients and process on low for 1-2 minutes, until you get a smooth batter.

image

3. refrigerate the batter for at least two hours, or overnight.

4. bring a few inches of water to a fast boil in a large pot, and place a large, nonstick pan over the pot, tying it with kitchen string if necessary–this will help to evenly distribute heat and prevent the warqa from drying out. allow the pan to heat for a few minutes.

5. using a pastry brush, brush a thin layer of batter onto the pan in large, circular strokes, filling the entire pan. carefully apply a second layer to any bare spots (but don’t worry about small holes or feathery edges).

6. cook until the warqa becomes opaque and the edges start to curl, about 2 minutes. loosen the edges of the dough with a spatula and peel the dough off of the pan using your hands.

image

7. flip the dough over onto a plate covered with a paper towel, and lay another paper towel on top of it. repeat, stacking the sheets of dough on top of each other, until you’ve used all of the batter.

image

for the savoury filling:

1. toast cinnamon stick, black peppercorns, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, and saffron threads in a dry skillet over medium heat for a few minutes until fragrant. (if using ground spices, just toast the saffron threads.)

2. grind spices in a spice mill (I use a coffee grinder). if you’re using ground spices, you can just crush the toasted saffron threads with your fingers or in a mortal and pestle.

3. mix ground spices, ras el hanout, and 2 tsp salt with 3 tbsp olive oil–if you’re using ground ginger, add it now. chop the zucchini and yellow squash into small cubes and coat them with the spiced oil.

4. spread the squash evenly in a single layer over a baking sheet and roast at 450F for 20 minutes.

image

5. heat 2 tbsp olive oil in a large pan on medium heat for a few minutes until sizzling. add diced onion and garlic and grated ginger and cook for a few minutes until fragrant, stirring occasionally.

6. (optional): whisk ¼ cup plus 2 tbsp Follow Your Heart vegan egg mix with 1 ½ cups of cold water until smooth.

7. add egg mixture, roasted squash, chickpeas, parsley, and cilantro to the pan with the onion and garlic. heat, stirring occasionally, until the eggs are fully cooked and appear scrambled (or until the filling is warmed through, if you’re omitting the eggs).

image

for the almond filling:

1. blanch the almonds by boiling them in water for about a minute, emptying them into a colander and rinsing with cool water, and gently pinching the skins to remove them.

2. heat about 2 tsp of vegetable oil on medium in a large pan and fry the almonds for about 10 minutes, stirring often, until golden brown. set aside some almonds for a topping, if desired.

image

3. pulse almonds, sugar, cinnamon, and orange blossom water a few times in a food processor until you get coarse crumbs.

forming the pastilla:

1. place one sheet of warqa in the bottom of a pie pan and brush with melted margarine. place 4-5 more sheets around the pan so that they cover all of the sides and hang over the edge, brushing each one with more melted margarine. add 2 more sheets of warqa in the middle, brushing each with margarine.

image

2. place the savoury filling in the pie, making sure that it’s even and spread all the way to the edges.

3. (optional): add another sheet or two of warqa on top of the savoury filling and brush with margarine.

image

4. spread the almond filling over the warqa, making sure that it’s even and spread all the way to the edges.

image

5. add another 2-3 sheets of warqa, brushing each with margarine, and fold the excess inwards.

image

6. fold the excess warqa around the sides of the pan inwards, brushing each sheet with more melted margarine.

image

7. cover the pastilla with 1-2 more sheets of warqa, tucking the excess into the sides of the pie pan. brush the entire thing with more margarine to seal.

image

8. bake on the center rack of an oven at 400F for about 40 minutes, until warqa is golden brown and crisp. allow to cool slightly before removing from pan.

image

to decorate:

1. sift powdered sugar evenly onto the surface of the pastilla.

2. add ground cinnamon, spread evenly or in a pattern as desired (I formed diamonds by criss-crossing lines of cinnamon carefully with a small spoon).

3. add the almonds you kept back from the almond filling as desired. you can also use sliced or slivered almonds. try doing an image search for “Moroccan pastilla” or “pastilla marocaine” for decoration ideas.

cut carefully and serve! pastilla is often eaten with harissa, a North African hot sauce made with red peppers.

vegan raspberry-blackberry-almond scones with cinnamon almond…

vegan raspberry-blackberry-almond scones with cinnamon almond glaze

recipe under the cut!

makes about 10 scones

INGREDIENTS:

for the scones:

  • 2 ¾ cups pastry flour or all-purpose flour
  • ½ to ¾ cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp plus 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ cup frozen vegan margarine (I used Earth Balance)
  • ½ cup non-dairy milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tsp almond extract
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • about ¼ cup water
  • ¾ cup blackberries
  • ¾ cup raspberries
  • ¼ cup sliced or slivered almonds

for the glaze:

  • 2 tbsp powdered or superfine sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tsp non-dairy milk
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp almond extract
  • plus additional sliced or slivered almonds to top

INSTRUCTIONS:

for the scones:

  1. mix all of the dry ingredients for the scones in a large bowl. add the frozen margarine and cut it into the bowl with a dough cutter or a fork until most of the pieces of butter are roughly pea-sized. don’t worry if there are some larger chunks!
  2. add all wet ingredients except water to the dry ingredients, then add just enough water for the dough to come together–it shouldn’t be sticky.
  3. add blackberries, raspberries, and almonds to the dough, making sure that they’re well-distrubuted. be gentle–you don’t want to break them!
  4. line a baking sheet with parchment paper or aluminum foil and start to form your scones. I went the drop scone route with this: just form small handfuls and drop them onto the sheet.
  5. freeze the scones for about an hour (this is optional but will make the scones more flaky once they’re baked).
  6. bake the scones for 20-25 minutes, until they’re firm and golden brown on top and cooked all the way through.

for the glaze:

  1. mix all ingredients, adding more milk or sugar if needed to acheive a syrup-y consistency.
  2. spoon the glaze over the scones and top with more almonds if desired.