Before you decide you will not make these based on the raw chickpeas, please read a little more. I have never liked the taste or texture of using sprouted chickpeas in raw recipes and have generally opted to use nuts instead. Well, this recipe base has totally changed my mind. This is adapted from a recipe posted by Rawfully Tempting for Garden Chickpea Fritters a while back. The base is 2 c sprouted chickpeas to 1c almonds and that is fantastic. I was out of almonds and wanted to test using sunflowers seeds which are cheaper and better for you anyway. It worked really well, although almonds produce a much tastier end product, i can deal with it knowing how much better sunflower seed are for me.
You'll also notice the addition of psyllium husk powder - the psyllium powder makes the dumpling fluffier and lighter. I have never seen powder for sale, only husk (i get mine direct from Tree Harvest) - if you are using husk, you may need to triple the amount or powder it in a spice mill. You don't have to use it, if you decide not to then there is no need to add anything in it's place, it will hold together just fine without it.
A note on the harissa; i am a spice addict, but you may find that you'd prefer a creamy tahini sauce or young coconut yogurt sauce to go with these spicy little dumplings. Also, the spices in the harissa are toasted, this is a necessary step from a flavour perspective, but you could always opt out of that.
all formed and ready to dehydrate
RAW Curried Chickpea & Spinach Dumplings
Makes approx 20 fritters
250g sprouted chickpeas
150g sunflower seeds, soaked 4-8 hours and rinsed
1 clove garlic
50g shallot, peeled and rough chopped
50ml lemon juice
40ml olive oil
1 ½ tbsp madras curry powder
1 tsp fine crystal salt
20g fresh coriander, finely chopped
100g red bell pepper, diced
150g baby spinach
½ tsp crystal salt
1 tsp psyllium powder
In a high speed blender, blend first 8 ingredients into a smooth pate like consistency. Transfer to a mixing bowl and add coriander, bell pepper and psyllium and mix well to combine. In a separate bowl, combine spinach and salt and massage the salt into the spinach until the natural juices in the spinach release and it’s completely wilted. Squeeze the excess liquid out of the spinach and finely chop it. Add the spinach to the dumpling “batter” and mix well. Using an ice cream scoop or damp hands, form the dumplings into balls and place on a solid dehydrator tray for 5 hours then transfer them to a mesh sheet for an additional 5 hours or until moist inside and dry outside or how ever you like it.
If you store them while they are moist inside they will be completely moist within a few hours, just pop into the dehydrator for an hour before serving.
the "rolling" set up (don't take notice to my green juice in the back round, it's not part of the rolling )
Red Pepper Harissa
6 red chilies, sliced lengthwise, seeds scraped out and discarded and chopped
2 red bell peppers, de-seeded and chopped
5 sun dried tomatoes, soaked to reconstitute and sliced
2 shallots, peeled and roughly chopped
2 tsp smoked sweet paprika
1 clove garlic
50ml olive oil
70ml apple cyder vinegar
2 tsp crystal salt
½ tbsp of each: coriander seeds, fennel seeds, cumin seeds and caraway seeds
1 or 2 sterilized jars
Heat a small frying pan over medium heat and add the spice mix until they become fragrant and start to “pop” remove from heat and grind the spices in a mortar and pestle or spice grinder until finely ground.
In a high speed blender or food processor (high speed blender is best) combine all ingredients (including toasted spice mix ) and blend/ process until smooth. Pour into sterile jars and seal. It’s best to wait 1 week before using it to allow the flavours to develop, but it’s nice straight away too. Once to start using it, be sure to cover it in oil when you finish so it doesn’t go mouldy.
Things that lurk in the hedgerows have always fascinated me; Curious berries that we always gathered as children for sweet crumble and the first shoots of green leaves, which pop up at this time of year. I’ve always had the knowledge to use what most people refer to as ‘weeds’ as food and medicine. I believe that our best medicines are the ones growing outside our back doors!
The warm spell of weather that we are blessed with right now has brought on the emerging of many of our spring greens, herbs and blossoms. I adore this time of year, when nature really ‘springs’ back to life after the dormant winter. Scraping back the leaves I uncovered my beloved nettle patch this morning. I cherish my wild back garden and take great pride in my abundant nettles! Keeping them cut short once they grow up in the summer keeps the prime young tips coming, which is what we want for use in our diets. Mine will grow now until late autumn, when I will harvest the last young leaves to dry in the dehydrator for use in teas throughout the winter.
This weeks series of posts will include five new ‘superfoods’ to add to your diet. At this time year, some times we can get too focused on what we are giving up from our diets, though how much better we could feel if we switch that to what we will add in! I like to think of a living food diet as one of abundance, rather than denial. When we make that shift to adding in lots of new exciting foods, the old unhealthier ones will naturally drop away. As spring seems to be well and truly upon us now, what better time to add some new local, seasonal superfoods into your diet to help that detox along?
Having been exploring raw foods for many years now, I have adapted the diet I discovered whilst travelling in tropical climates to one that supports our local and seasonal produce here in the UK. For me, it is so important to focus on these foods, and feel that eating this way puts me more in touch with nature. I am going to be excited as ever watching all the spring cleansing greens appear, wait patiently until summer to gorge on fresh berries and tomatoes, and switch back to my earthier, warmer diet of roots and squashes as autumn rolls in. But for now, it’s all about shaking off the winter layers and lightening up with fresh, wild greens, flowers and berries! Some of the plants I am going to posting about may take a few more weeks to appear where you are if you live in the UK, but here’s a start to get your eyes opening to the abundance that grows all around us.
My first favourite recipe, which is going to be a staple in my diet, is my Wild Garlic Pesto. Wild garlic (also known as ramsons) carpet the floors of woodlands from early spring until early summer, and you can smell them before you spot them! They have a lovely strong, garlic flavour within a broad, bright green leaf, which grown in clusters around a main stem with a white flower bulb, which can also be eaten. You can use the leaves in salads, but my I like to make them into pesto, which I use on raw veg noodles, stirred into warm grains or on raw crackers. I keep my recipes very simple, using very few ingredients, but you can change the seeds/nuts to vary the taste, or make it with a mixture of wild garlic and other green herbs like parsley if you wish. I use sunflower seeds as they are so cheap compared to pine nuts traditionally used in pesto, and have a mild flavour which lets the strong taste of the wild garlic through. Wild garlic is high in vitamins A, B and C, and contains the same antiseptic, anti bacterial and antitoxic effects as onions and garlic, so they are great for digestive cleansing. The sunflower seeds contain protein and vitamin E, and the flax seed oil is high in omega 3 fatty acid. The pesto will keep in the fridge for weeks as long as you keep a layer of oil on the top.
2 handfuls Wild garlic leaves
½ cup sunflower seeds (or pine nuts, pumpkin seeds seeds, walnuts, pecans…)
½ cup flax seed oil
1 Tbsp Nutritional yeast flakes
½ tsp salt
Put the seeds at the bottom of a blender, add oil and blend until the nuts are broken down. Add the washed and torn wild garlic leaves and stems, salt and nutritional yeast flakes. Blend until creamy and transfer into sterilized jars, sealing the top of each jar with some oil to preserve the pesto.
Wild Garlic Pesto