Pumpkin Pie

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This was pretty delicious. You’d never know that it was vegan and gluten free. I made them into tarts instead, but you should do whatever rocks your socks! ūüôā

Ingredients for Pie Crust

1 cup rice flour
1/2 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup potato starch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons xanthan gum
4 ounces Butter Spread from Earth Balance or¬†Spectrum Naturals Organic Shortening (if you can’t have soy)
1 large egg beaten (or use 1/4 cup extra ice water if allergic to eggs)
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar (or water if you can’t use vinegar)
3 tablespoons ice cold water

Directions for Pie Crust

1. Mix flours, salt, and xanthan gum in a bowl. Rub in the margarine,but not too much. The mixture should resemble baked beans rather than breadcrumbs.
2. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, vinegar and ice water.
3. Slowly stir the egg mix into the flour mix, until a ball is formed.
4. Knead the pastry (with a little gf flour if needed) for 2-3 minutes.
5. Wrap the pastry and place in the fridge for at least an hour. **It can be frozen at this stage.
6. If the pastry is a little hard when removed from the fridge, knead again a little bit.
7. Roll out on a floured surface. Place in pie pan and follow baking instructions for your pie recipe.
8. If cooked pastry is needed for your recipe the pastry can be cooked at 425 degrees for 10-12 minutes.

Courtesy of http://www.food.com/recipe/pastry-recipe-for-pie-crust-gluten-free-214686

Ingredient for Pumpkin Filling

1 (16 ounce) can pumpkin puree (or any type of squash/sweet potato puree)
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 allspice
1 (10 ounce) package soft tofu ( do not use low fat)

Directions for Pumpkin Filling

1. Preheat oven to 425¬įF.
2. Cream the tofu, pumpkin and sugar in a food processor; add salt and spices, and mix thoroughly.
3. Pour mixture into pie shell and bake for 15 minutes.
4. Lower heat to 350 F and bake for another 40 minutes.
5. Chill and serve.

Courtesy of http://www.food.com/recipe/pumpkin-pie-made-with-tofu-no-milk-or-eggs-78098

Tangy Thai Wraps

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So these ones are interesting. They too were part of the menu for my catering gig at a Craving Change Mississauga event (http://www.cravingchange.org/). I handed out feedback cards at the event and the wraps showed up in both the “best hit” & “worst miss” category.

Try it out if you’re feeling so adventurous and decide for yourself!

Makes 12 wraps


1 tablespoon sesame oil
¬Ĺ teaspoon sea salt
¬ľ cup maple syrup
¬Ĺ cup lime juice
2 tablespoons chopped ginger
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 ¬Ĺ tablespoons tamari
1 cup almond butter
¬Ĺ head red cabbage, shredded
6 large collard green leaves
1 avocado, sliced
2 large carrots, shredded
1 large ripe mango, cut lengthwise into strips
1 bunch mint leaves
1 bunch basil leaves


1. In a vita mix or high speed blender, puree the maple syrup, lemon juice, ginger and tamari. Add the almond butter and blend at low speed to combine, add water to thin out if necessary.
2. In a medium bowl, add the shredded cabbage with almond butter mixture and toss well to combine.
3. Cut out the center rib of each collard green leaf, dividing the leaf in half. Place the leaves in a large bowl and toss with 1 tsp of tamari and a 1 tbsp of sesame oil and toss around with hands to coat. Allow to marinate for 1-2 minutes.
4. Place half leaf on a cutting board with the underside facing up. Arrange a few tablespoons of the cabbage mixture evenly across the bottom third of the leaf, leaving about 11/2 inches clear at the bottom. Lay a few stick of carrot and a few strips of mango on top.
5. Add a few leaves of each mint and basil along with some avocado.
6. Fold the bottom of the collard leaf up and over the filling, keeping it tight, and tuck the leaf under the ingredients and roll forward. Place the roll seam side down on a serving dish.

Courtesy of http://fullynourished.ca/2009/03/organic-is-in-pesticides-are-out/

Lentil Loaf with Gravy

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I made this for my friend Fatima who came over for dinner (who also happens to be on the anti-inflammatory diet, yay for anti-inflammatory friends!). I was scared when this one came out of the oven. It didn’t appear terribly appetizing but redeemed itself as soon as I took the first bite.

I served it with a side of kale, one of my favourite leafy greens.

The loaf is not super tasty on its own, so make sure to make the gravy!

Serves 4-5

Ingredients for Lentil Loaf

1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion
2 clove garlic
2 stalks celery
2 teaspoons sage
3 cups cooked lentils
3 cups cooked wild rice(you can use a wild rice/brown rice mix)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1/4 cup dry gluten free breadcrumbs
2 tablespoons vinegar
2 egg substitute
2 tablespoons gluten free flour
salt & pepper to taste

Directions For Lentil Loaf
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
2. Chop onion and celery finely, and crush the garlic clove.
3. Head oil in frying pan over medium heat and saute the onion, garlic and celery until
onion is translucent.
4. Add the sage.
5. Combine all ingredients in a large bowl and mix well.
6. Oil loaf pan and fill the with the mixture.
7. Press down.
8. Bake 30 minutes covered, 10 minutes uncovered.Let stand for 5-10 minutes before cutting and serving.
Note: I used the wild and brown rice combo and I found that the loaf was pretty soft when I removed it from the oven. I let it cool for a while, about 40 minutes, before it was hard enough to be a “loaf”.
Adapted from http://www.food.com/recipe/vegan-holiday-lentil-loaf-48794


Ingredients for Gravy

1/2 cup good vegetable oil (I use olive)
6 cloves garlic, minced
3 slices yellow onions, chopped
1/2 cup gluten free flour
4 teaspoons nutritional yeast
4 tablespoons braggs
2 cups water
1/2 teaspoon sage
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 -6 mushrooms, sliced (optional)
additional gluten free flour/cornstarch if not thick enough (optional)

Direction for Gravy

1. Pour the oil in a saucepan and heat.
2. Add garlic and onions and saute 5 minutes.
3. Add the flour, nutritional yeast, and braggs, stirring constantly until it makes a think, thick sauce.
4. Gradually stir in the water and add spices.
5. Keep adding cornstarch or flour until it is the right thickness for you!
6. Serve hot.

Adapted from http://www.food.com/recipe/vegan-gravy-14607

Butternut Squash Soup 2 (without coconut)

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I absolutely love the “Butternut Squash Soup 1 (with coconut)” recipe I posted previously. I was craving it a few days ago but needed to make it withOUT coconut as I am on a 6 week parasite and candida cleanse (parasites love their coconut ;)).

I experimented with stuff I already had in the fridge and it turned out good! Not as delicious as it would have been with coconut of course, but it’s the next best thing!


2 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 tbsp ginger, minced
4 carrots, sliced
1 apple (the sweeter, the better), sliced
3 stalks celery, diced
2 small or one large butternut squash, peeled and chopped
5 cups vegetable broth
2 tbsp chopped fresh sage or 1 tbsp sage powder
2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2-1 tbsp nutmeg
1.2-1 tbsp curry powder
1/2 cup soy milk/almond milk
salt and pepper to taste


In a large soup pot, sautee the onion and garlic in olive oil until onions turn soft, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Add the carrots, apple and celery and cook for another 3 to 5 miutes.

Add the squash and stir just to coat, then add the vegetable broth and spices (not salt & pepper). Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to a slow simmer. Allow to cook for at least 25 minutes, or until squash is soft.

Using a potato masher or a large fork, mash the squash until smooth, or, alternatively, you can puree the soup in a food processor, blender or hand blender.

Stir in your dairy free milk and season with salt and pepper to taste.

Tofu Satay with Almond Sauce

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This is another ridiculously tasty dish. If I were on death row, this would be on my short-list for last meals. Maybe the analogy is too dramatic but you get my drift.

I’ve made tofu satay twice and always receive PLENTY of compliments.


Serves 2-4


1 block medium to firm tofu
optional: 1/2 purple onion/yellow onion/1 carrot/3 beets/1 zucchini
1 pack wooden skewers


1/4 cup minced lemongrass, fresh or frozen-prepared
2 shallots OR 1/4 cup purple onion, sliced
3-4 cloves garlic
1-2 fresh red chilies, OR 1/2 to 3/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 thumb-size piece galangal OR ginger, sliced
1/2 tsp. turmeric
2 Tbsp. ground coriander
2 tsp. ground cumin
2 Tbsp. tamari
3 Tbsp. braggs
6 Tbsp. brown sugar
3 Tbsp. vegetable oil
sea salt to taste

ALMOND SAUCE (for dipping)

1 cup unsalted almonds
1/3 cup water
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp. tamari
2 tsp. sesame oil
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
2.5 to 3 Tbsp. regular braggs
1/2 tsp. tamarind paste OR 1/2 Tbsp. lime juice
1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper, OR 1 tsp. Thai chili sauce (more or less to taste)
1/3 cup coconut milk

Directions for satay marinade

1. Slice tofu into strips or workable pieces (on the thin side for weaving the satay sticks    through). Place in a bowl large enough for marinating and set aside.

2. Place all marinade ingredients in a food processor or blender. Blitz to create a dark, rich satay marinade. Taste-test the marinade for salt, spice, and sweetness. Tip: with this mariande, you should first taste SALTY, followed by SWEET and spicy. Add a little salt if needed, or more sugar if not sweet enough. Add more chili for more heat, if desired.

3. Pour marinade over prepared strips, turning the tofu to cover all sides. Add the other veggies (if using) and gently turn toss all together. Set in the refrigerator to marinate at least 1 hour, or cover and leave up to 24 hours.

4. Thread the tofu pieces onto wooden or stainless-steel skewers (soak wooden ones in your sink 10 minutes beforehand to prevent burning). Retain the bowl with the leftover mariande for basting.

5. If grilling, lightly brush grill with oil, then set skewers over a hot fire. Grill until lightly browned, basting generously with leftover marinade.

6. If using oven, lay prepared satay on a baking sheet (cover first with parchment paper, if desired). Set oven to BROIL and place a rack on the highest or second-highest rung of your oven. Slide satay under the broiler and broil 5 minutes per side before turning. Continue broiling in this way until nicely browned and onions are lightly charred. Baste halfway through cooking with leftover marinade, and follow serving instructions above.

Directions for almond sauce

1. Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend or process until sauce is smooth. If you prefer a runnier sauce, add a little more water or coconut milk.

2. Do a taste test, adding more tamari/braggs if not salty enough, or more cayenne if not spicy enough. If too salty, add a squeeze of fresh lime juice. If you’d prefer it sweeter, add a little more sugar.

3. Serve warm or at room temperature with my the tofu satay. It also makes a great dip with fresh veggies, fresh rolls, or other Asian finger foods. Or combine with noodles to create a Thai-style noodle dish or cold noodle salad. Enjoy!

Note: This sauce tends to thicken as it sits Рjust add a little water or coconut milk to thin it out, as needed. Otherwise it stores well if kept covered in the refrigerator (keep up to 2 weeks; freeze thereafter).

Adapted from
http://thaifood.about.com/od/vegetarianthairecipes/r/Vegetarian-Thai-Satay-Vegan.htm & http://thaifood.about.com/od/thaicurrypasterecipes/r/Easy-Satay-Sauce-Recipe.htm

Rice Roti

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My background is Pakistani and so I grew up with a lot of rotis to say the least. I used to buy the Food For Life Brown Rice Tortillas as a roti substitute when I first became gluten free which worked well for a number of months (thank you for that Food For Life!). However, like other gluten free foods I was purchasing, I quickly realized that I could make it myself for a fraction of the cost.

Here is my rice roti recipe. Feel free to use it as a base and add whatever else you please. Sometimes I add onions, cilantro and spices if I’m feeling fancy (makes a dosa type roti).

Makes 4 medium sized rotis


1 cup brown rice flower

1.5 cup water

1 tablespoon olive oil

salt (optional)


Heat oil in frying pan over medium eat. Mix brown rice flour, salt (if using)and water into bowl until smooth (no clumps). Pour a thin layer of batter onto hot frying pan (I usually use a ladle for this). Let cook for 5 minutes (or until it starts to brown), flip and then cook for another 5 minutes (or until it starts to brown).

Serve warm.

Cocoa Bliss Balls

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These were part of the menu for one of my catering gigs for my friend Sarah’s food coop, Craving Change Mississauga (http://www.cravingchange.org/) in February 2012.

They turned out pretty well. They are not incredibly sweet which is what I like. If you are like my partner Irfan, who likes everything super sweet, you may want to add more maple syrup although I like them they way they are.

Check it out for yourself!

Makes 32 timbit sized balls


3/4 cup almond butter
1/4 cup tahini
1/2 cup maple syrup
3/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 cup oat bran
1/2 cup quinoa flakes
1 cup coconut flakes


1. Add nut butter, tahini, and maple syrup to a bowl or food processor and blend until smooth.
2. Add sesame seeds, cocoa powder, oat bran and quinoa flakes and blend until mixture becomes like dough.
3. Scrape down sides of food processor as necessary. Spread coconut on a plate.
4. Rolled mixture into 1-inch balls and rolls in shredded coconut.
5. Cover and store in refrigerator for up to two weeks.

Courtesy of http://fullynourished.ca/2009/07/better-than-timbits/