I am very fortunate to have a very loving and supportive family. Last year my brother bought a few vegan cookbooks for me and even though I was grateful and excited at the prospect of being inspired by the cookbooks, I have not used any of them extensively. In fact Veganomicon was sitting on my shelf for the longest time and finally, I decided that it was time for me to try out the famous chickpea cutlets.
Luckily, the recipe itself is not too difficult to make and I already purchased some wheat gluten months ago in anticipation of trying this recipe (Obviously I was procrastinating). I followed it to near exactness apart from the fact that I did not have dried sage at home.
The verdict? I wasn't blown away as I was expecting to be. It was definitely good, I think it will make a good sandwich filling and my hubby was happy to sneak into the kitchen for a quick nibble while I was cooking them but somehow the wheat gluten made my digestion sluggish and I didn't quite enjoy the texture it created. However, the next day, the leftovers tasted better and I ate it cold smothered with mustard... yum....
Will I make them again? I'm not sure, I might make the recipe minus the gluten or reduce the amount. Well something to think about for sure.
Chickpea Cutlet (Recipe from Veganomican found here)
- 1 cup cooked chickpeas
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup vital wheat gluten
- 1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs
- 1/4 cup vegetable broth or water
- 2 tablespoons soy sauce
- 2 cloves garlic, pressed or grated with a Microplane grater
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon Hungarian paprika (I used normal chili powder)
- 1/4 teaspoon dried rubbed sage (I used a bit of basil)
- Olive oil for pan frying
1) In a mixing bowl, mash the chickpeas together with the oil until no chickpeas are left. Add the remaining ingredients and knead together for about 3 minutes, until strings of gluten have formed.
2)Preheat a large heavy-bottomed nonstick or cast iron skillet over medium heat. Meanwhile, divide the cutlet dough into 4 equal pieces. To form cutlets, knead each piece in your hand for a few moments and then flatten and stretch each one into a roughly 6 by 4 inch rectangular cutlet shape. The easiest way to do this is to form a rectangle shape in your hands and then place the cutlets on a clean surface to flatten and stretch them.
3) Add a moderately thin layer of olive oil to the bottom of the pan. Place the cutlets in the pan and cook on each side for 6 to 7 minutes. Add more oil, if needed, when you flip the cutlets. They’re ready when lightly browned and firm to the touch.