Monday 8 August 2016

Truffled cashew cheese for Sage tempeh sausage wraps using Spelt flatbreads

I don't often have my brother over to lunch so I was delighted that, when we were organising a recent lunch, he was keen to cook with me.  The initial idea was to make spelt wraps because Paul was after spelt recipes.  Once I know he was on board to help out, I went all out on a fancypants wrap of cashew cream cheese, lavender fried shallots, sage tempeh patties and baby spinach.  Inspired by Street Vegan.  If only every lunch time was so much fun and so delicious!

I had already tried two of the components of our meal before.  The first was the truffle cashew cheese.  I bought truffle oil from an airport when visiting Paris earlier this year.   I will never eat anything with truffle oil again without thinking of that trip. 

At Orly Airport we had bought a few last purchases including the truffle oil.  Then began the queuing to get through customs.  We were told that it was ok to take liquids through customs as we stood in queue.  Someone else told us to leave the lengthy queue use the automatic passport scanner but when we got there we were told that we should have registered and Sylvia was not able to use it as she was not yet 8 years old.  Finally, when I walked through the body scanner, I saw an officer was speaking disapprovingly in French and holding up my truffle oil at the same time that Sylvia was nervous at going through the scanner after me.  Then we waited for ages in a cramped waiting area for a late plane.  Sylvia fondly remembers that she was first on that plane!

It took me ages to work out what to do with the truffle oil.  Then I found truffle cashew cheese in Adam Sobel's Street Vegan which I borrowed from Faye of Veganopoulous.  And because it wasn't quite right for me I found a similar recipe online which suited.  I loved it.  The truffle oil makes it rich but in a good way.   It was great in dips and sandwiches.  Above is a ciabatta with truffle cashew cheese, avocado and grated carrot.

Later I made some of the Sage Tempeh Sausage Patties from Street Vegan.  I was intrigued at the idea of blending up tempeh with seasonings and baking them to make sausage patties.  It worked pretty well though I felt that the flavour of the fennel seeds were a bit intense.  We all enjoyed them.  Sylvia even ate one or two.

I also decided to stick with my regular sourdough flatbread recipe and substitute spelt for wheat flour rather than trying another online spelt flatbread recipe.  This was a good decision as I tried the latter recipe on another day and found those flatbreads to be dry and disappointing.

By the time that Paul arrived, though I had quite a bit of cooking to do, most of it was something I had done before.  Street Vegan is a great cookbook with lots of really interesting reflections on food truck culture and the history of the Cinnamon Snail Food Truck where a lot of the food in the book is sold.  The recipes are not for beginners but are great to make for a special occasion or when there is team cooking.

Paul is quite a fearless cook and happy to divvy up the tasks.  I started on the cashew cheese and he got the lavender shallots underway.  Then he started on the sage tempeh sausage patties while I started to fry up the flatbreads.

The original recipe in Street Vegan for the shallots was Lavender Roasted Shallots.  But my oven is so slow when it comes to roasting that I thought frying them might work better.  We fried them gently in the roasting marinade while we prepared other components of the meal.  I reduced the lavender and felt it was enough for me.

I really liked the Sage Tempeh Sausage Patties.  The ones I made with Paul had a better flavour.  The raw mixture was quite sweet but it was less noticeable once cooked.  (Hence my 2-3 tbsp maple syrup in the below recipe to remind me to start with 2 tbsp and see if it was enough next time.)  Blending seasoned tempeh is brilliant in imitating sausage meat.  However we forgot the wheatgerm when doing them with Paul and they were a bit soft as a result.

I really loved the truffle cashew cheese.  It is soft and smooth like a creamy dip.  It is a cheese for spreading rather than grating or slicing.  I was happy that there seemed to lots of this for another day.  Just the soft of vegan cheese spread I love to have in the fridge.

And everything tasted brilliant when wrapped in a soft spelt flatbread.  I was really pleased how the spelt flour worked in my usual recipe.  It wasn't completely spelt as there is white flour in my sourdough starter.  But it was the sort of spelt recipe that Paul had been seeking.

Finally everything was ready and the table set.  We sat down and stuffed our flatbreads and were well and truly satisfied with an excellent lunch.  The patties were served in sliders in the book but it was the flatbreads that I had originally planned to make.  I would love to try more dishes from Street Vegan but many dishes seem quite complex like this and most days I just don't have time.  However I am very pleased to have made an approximation of one of the amazing recipes in the book.

I am sending this to Jacqueline for Meat Free Mondays, Kimmy and Mary Ellen for Healthy Vegan Fridays and Kirsty, Mandy and Eb for Cook Blog Share.

More tempeh recipes on Green Gourmet Giraffe:
Chesapeake tempeh cakes (v) 
Pumpkin and kale soup with tempeh crumbles (gf, v)
Tamarind Tempeh with Noodles (v)
Tempeh and corn soup (gf, v)
Tempeh and pumpkin lasagne (v)
Watercourse Foods tempeh burger (gf,v)

Sage Tempeh Sausage Wraps
see below for component recipes

Truffle cashew cheese
Spelt flatbreads
Tempeh sausage patties
Lavender roasted shallots
Baby spinach

Spread truffle cashew cheese over the middle of a flatbread, pile with sausage patties, shallots and spinach.  Roll up and devour!

Truffle cashew cheese
Adapted from Nutrition Stripped

1 cup raw cashews (soaked for 1hr or more)
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
2 tbsp truffle oil
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
1 cloves garlic
2-3 tsp dijon mustard
1 tsp sea salt

Blend until smooth.  Keeps for quite a few days in fridge in sealed container.

Spelt Flatbreads
Adapted from Green Gourmet Giraffe
Makes 4

*250g sourdough starter (100% hydration - straight from fridge without feeding)
*200g spelt flour
50g filtered water
pinch salt

Mix all ingredients and knead briefly until you have a smooth firm ball of dough.  Cut into four.  Roll out each portion as thin as possible (about a 0.5cm thick) on a lightly floured board .

Heat a heavy based non-stick frypan over a high heat.  Place a round of dough onto the pan.  Heat for a few minutes or until it balloons up and brown spots appear on the other side.  Flip over, flatten with an eggflip or spatula and fry another minute or two until you have some brown spots on the other side.  I tend to brush out the flour from the pan (with a kitchen towel) before frying the next one so it isn't covered in burnt flour.  Best eaten on day of frying.

Tempeh sausages patties
Adapted from Street Vegan

300g packet of tempeh
3 tbsp white miso
1/4 cup chopped sage leaves
2-3 tbsp maple syrup
1 tbsp sesame oil
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves
1/4 tsp chilli paste
1/3 cup wheatgerm

Blend everything together to form a sticky but fairly thick mixture.  (We did this using a stick blender in a jug.)  Using damp hands shape small handfuls into patties..  Place on lined oven tray.  Bake for 20-30 min at 200 C until slightly browned but still quite soft.  (My own is quite slow so I did not worry but Street Vegan warned not to dry them out.)

Lavender fried shallots
Adapted from Street Vegan

1 tsp dried edible lavender flowers
2 tbsp seeded mustard
3 tbsp apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp agave nectar
2 tsp liquid smoke
1 tbsp tamari
3 tbsp olive oil
7 shallots

Cover shallots with boiling water to loosen the skin then peel and slice lengthways.  (Discard soaking water.)  In a medium bowl mix lavender, mustard, vinegar, agave, liquid smoke, tamari and olive oil.  Fry in large heavy based nonstick frypan for 20-30 minutes over medium heat or until shallots soft and caramelised.

On the stereo:
Marvin the Album: Frente


  1. Funny that we've both had awkward food luggage stories! I've been cooking from Street Vegan too, and have a recipe to blog about later this week.

    1. Thanks Cindy - I will look forward to seeing what you cook from Street Vegan - so many amazing recipes

  2. I think I'll try this recipe and see if it helps me overcome my aversion to tempeh. I think I made the truffle cheese recipe but decided to reduce the truffle oil next time. Looks like a great meal indeed!

    1. Thanks Faye - it is a good way to try tempeh - I can't remember why I chose a different truffle cheese to the one in Street Vegan - but I liked the one I used

  3. I made cashew cheese once and it wasn't bad although I think the sound of a truffle one would make it even better!

    1. Thanks Lorraine - truffle oil is lovely in cashew cheese but I am very fond of most cashew cheeses I try

  4. Oooh, truffle oil sounds amazing as does the cashew cheese! I love cashew cheese so I'll have to order some truffle oil right away to make this!

    I forgot Adam wrote a book. He was always so nice when I used to see him on the Cinnamon Snail truck.

    Everything you made looks so wonderful! And what a great way to spend the day with your brother. :)

    1. Forgot to mention, you're being featured on HVF this week! :)

    2. Thanks Mary Ellen - great to hear that Adam is nice - I really liked the chatty bits in the book that gave an interesting insight into food trucks - would love to visit the cinnamon snail food truck

  5. I am so excited that you got to borrow Street VEgan from Faye, its one of my recent fave cookbooks as you may know.
    I am so pleased that you went all fancypants too, I wish my brothers would come round but they snub my veggie food in jest and scoff it down in haste when they want.
    PS if we lived near, I wonder what books I woudl borrow from you and you from me :) Happy Veggie cooking AND I want some truffle oil, been a long time. Have you wondered about vegetarians and vegan relationship with truffles especially as hogs and these days some dogs hunt for it. Just wondered.

    1. Thanks Shaheen - I think I would love it more if I had more time to really get into it but definitely an interesting one if you have a bit of time in the kitchen. I regret to say that I have brothers who would run a mile from vegan cooking but at least have one who is open minded.

      Would love to be able to swap books with you - and had not considered the animals hunting for truffles - bought the oil on a whim in the airport but don't usually have much food with truffle flavouring and only recently read the truffle oil doesn't necessarily have truffles in it!

  6. That's some good looking food. I'm always on the hunt for good tempeh recipes, as my general experience is a bit hit and miss. I'd definitely give this a go - vegan sausage patties are right up my street. How did you find the rest of the book? I've heard a lot of good things about it.

    1. Thanks Joey - I have had some hit and miss experiences with tempeh but of late they are usually pretty good - and I love finding an interesting tempeh recipe. The book is a good read but quite a lot of complex recipes - though if you break them down I am sure you could find it less overwhelming

  7. Looks like a terrific spread, and how fun to cook with your brother.

    1. Thanks Cakelaw - yes a great way to spend the morning

  8. Holy moly is this ever fancy pants! I'm drooling over my laptop over here. I loved hearing of you and your brother cooking together. I like cooking with my sister too - it gives me fond memories.
    I have never splurged on truffle oil yet, but I think this may be the recipe to do it for =) Ah your airport story... traveling would be so much more fun without airports ;p
    I think I will try the tempeh sausage without the wheat germ to make it gluten-free.
    This sounds excellent! Wow.
    Thanks for sharing with Healthy Vegan Fridays - it's being featured tomorrow. I'm pinning & sharing! Hope you're having a great week =)

    1. Thanks Kimmy - I recently have experimented with psyllium husk and wonder if that would be a good GF substitute for wheatgerm - if you have it! And thanks for featuring me - truffle oil is interesting though less so to customs officers (sigh!)

  9. I'm book marking this page because everything on it looks amazing! How lovely to cook with your brother and the end results are just drool worthy.

    I love the idea of making your own cashew cheese - I think that will be first on my list :)

    1. Thanks Lisa - I was sad to finish my truffle oil recently partly because I would love to make this cheese again - might even buy some more just for it!

  10. Oh my goodness, what a feast! I love truffle oil & can't wait to try it with cashew cheese, and make the lavender all sounds amazing

    1. Thanks Chardonnay and Samphire - indeed it is a recipe to use some of the fancy ingredients in your pantry! Enjoy


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