Wednesday, March 05, 2008

Raw Food Wednesday: Gobi Manchurian, Collard Green Salad Rolls

Dinner 3/05

Gobi Manchurian

Collard Green Salad Rolls

After making the cooked version of this last week, we wanted to try a raw version -- and the result was great!

The basic concept was to make a tempura-like batter to coat the cauliflower, so instead of a flour/cornstarch base, we used ground flax seed along with cumin seed and red pepper flake.

Raw Gobi Manchurian

1/2 head cauliflower, "flaked" (see below)

for the garlic/ginger paste

6 cloves garlic
1" piece peeled fresh ginger, grated (a microplane works best)
2 tbs. water

for the batter

1/2 cup flax seeds, finely ground
1/2 tsp. cumin seeds, finely ground
1/2 tsp. red pepper flake
sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
half of the garlic ginger paste
1 tsp. nama shoyu
1 tsp. olive oil
1/2 cup water

for the sauce

1/2 small red onions, minced
1 Thai chile (or jalepeno), thinly sliced
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes (soaked 30 minutes)
2 or 3 cherry tomatoes
1 tbs. cold-pressed sesame oil (or olive oil)
remaining garlic/ginger paste
sea salt & pepper to taste

for the garnish

2 scallions, thinly sliced
cilantro leaves

1. "Flake" the cauliflower by first dividing it into small florets, and then using your fingers work around the bottom of the floret and stem, and snap off small sections about the size of "popped" popcorn. I won't lie, it's tedious. You could also use a pairing knife, but it works faster with your fingers once you get the hang of it. Set aside.

2. With a mortar and pestle, mash the garlic and ginger and a pinch of sea salt until well combined and add 2 tbs. of water to make a wet paste. You could use a blender, but there isn't enough volume to break the garlic and ginger down the way a mortar and pestle does.

3. Grind the flax seed, red pepper flake, cumin seed, salt, and pepper together and place in a medium bowl. Stir in half the garlic paste, 1 tsp. nama shoyu, and about 1/2 cup water to make a batter. It should be the consistency of pancake batter. Dip the cauliflower pieces in batter and place on a teflex sheet at 105F 6-8 hours, turning occasionally. You can remove it from the teflex and place it directly on the rack about halfway through.

(Now, at this point you can do one of two things -- about an hour into the dehydrating time, we removed half of the cauliflower and rolled them a dry mixture of 1/4 cup flax seed, 1/2 tsp. cumin seed, sea salt and pepper, coating them for a second time. The batter was still sticky enough to accept the coating, and did so perfectly. The other half we left alone to see what the difference would be. We decided we like the extra bit of crunch/flavor from the second coating, but either way would still be good)

4. For the sauce: in a vita-mix combine the onions, chiles and remaining garlic/ginger paste with sun-dried tomatoes, tomato, nama shoyu, cold-pressed sesame oil and about 2 tbs. water -- it should be about the consistency of ketchup. If you like you could dehydrate for 1 hour in a glass small bowl to thicken it slightly.

5. Place the cauliflower in a bowl and top with the sauce, stir to combine. Garnish with remaining scallions and cilantro.

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