Saturday, 6 August 2011

Raw chia and linseed crackers

Last week we became the proud owners of a dehydrator (thank you, dear husband!) and after an initial –and yummy- experiment with apple rings I got down to some serious “cooking” with it. I used a recipe from the book that came with the dehydrator as  the basis for these, to get textures and dehydrating times right until I get the feel of it myself, but I have changed many of the ingredients, so I guess this counts as my own recipe now!
½ cup ground chia seeds
½ cup ground linseeds (flax)
¼ cup rice bran oil
1 cup finely-chopped carrots*/ parsnip/ sweet potato
1 cup water
1 tsp hing
1 tsp chilli powder
seasalt, black pepper and soy/tamari/ Liquid Aminos to taste
(You could also use herbs in these, but I didn’t this time as it’s the first month of Caturmasya.)
·         Blend everything together to a paste, adding more water gradually if needed
·         Spread evenly over a paraflex sheet on a dehydrating tray using damp fingers and a spatula about 6mm thick. Carefully score 20 crackers.
·         Dehydrate for 1 hour at 140F, than flip the sheet onto another tray, separate the crackers and continue to dehydrate at 105F for 6-10 hours, or more.
*Strictly speaking, Gaudiya Vaisnavas -and Vaisnavis- do not eat carrots (use my search engine to find out why).
I found that they needed a little more salt, but compensated for this by spreading yeast extract on them. Only the thinnest ones turned out crispy, but the softer ones were pleasantly "bread-y". If I wanted to make them all totally crispy, then I would make them thinner. I would have included a pic of how I topped them with tahini and courgette (zucchini) ribbons marinated in lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil and black pepper, but I ate them before I thought of getting my camera out...

Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Spicy potato wedges

Our homegrown potatoes are really delicious, and I'm constantly thinking of new ways to cook them. Here's one method I devised with the kids in mind, which pleased the adults in the house just as much- good thing I made extra coating so we can easily have them again!
I cut the scrubbed, freshly-dug potatoes into wedges and parboiled/ steamed them (not too soft, or they will break up). Meanwhile, I made the coating from organic wholemeal flour with chilli powder, salt, hing and a little Chinese five-spice powder (check it doesn't contain garlic). The exact proportions are up to you; bear in mind that the roasting will take away some of the chilli taste. When you are satisfied with your mix, roll the wedges in the coating and arrange on a baking sheet spread with organic cold-pressed sunflower oil.
I cooked the wedges for about half an hour in a hot oven (200C-225C) and they emerged crispy (I left the skins on), golden-brown and delicious...