Category Archives: Salads and dressings

Beetroot Pesto and Community Kitchen

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We’ve been a bit “out of blog” lately. This doesn’t imply we don’t cook, it rather means that some lovely visits and parties kept us busy.

Café Morgenrot

Abel looking satisfied after Café Morgenrot-brunch

You might have noticed, that Berlin is quite inspirational for vegetarians and vegans. Right when we landed, before heading to my family’s place, we went to have a big brunch to Cafe Morgenrot. It’s a collective café, meaning it is run by a politically critical community. They state to be emancipated, against discrimination and without hierarchies. They have cinema evenings, exhibitions, “Stitch ‘n Bitch” sessions, feminist round tables, etc. Interesting.

What you definitely couldn’t find here: any sign of the world cup. Hell yeah!

Buffet

A hearthwarming buffet

Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday they also offer a huge vegetarian brunch with overwhelming vegan options. And the best; You pay what you like! Or actually, depending on your social/financial status, you pay what you can! 

Hungry traveller's breakfast

Hungry travellers’ breakfast

At this brunch we ate a yummie beetroot paste, which reminded me of the one my childhood friend Zsofia Szigeti (now photographer Sophia Veres) prepared when we were…well, kind of kids. Thus, I tried to reconstruct the recipe, with success.


 

BEETROOT PESTO

Ingredients (for about 2.5 dl)

  • 1.5 cups of beetroot (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 cup of walnut
  • 2 tbsp of balsamico (or any other vinegar)
  • 1 tbsp of salt
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil
  • 2 tbsp of vegan milk
  • a pinch of freshly grated pepper

Preparation time: 8 minutes

Mix it well together with a blender until you get a soft paste.

It is a versatile paté, that you can use as a dip for a BBQ (check), on a sandwich instead of butter (check), on a toast bread just like that (check) or even as a vegan pesto, with pasta. Simple and tasty, here you go!

Enjoying the paté in the sun :)

Enjoying the paté in the sun :)

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Turkish Eggplant Salad

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For years I have been longing to visit Turkey. Even though I have friends living in Istanbul and other parts, it still forms part of the TO DO list. The reason why I share my recipe now is because it’s 35 degrees here in Munich (a rare thing indeed) and it’s time to throw a BBQ at a nearby lake. I have been making this Turkish Eggplant Salad for many years now; I think I originally stole it from the Hungarian celebrity-chéf Judit Stahl.

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TURKISH EGGPLANT SALAD

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 2 big or 3 medium eggplants
  • 2/3 cups of oil (I prefer olive oil)
  • 2 cups of yoghurt (3.5% or more)
  • 1 big red onion (Julienne cut)
  • 3 big cloves of garlic (pressed)
  • 1 lime (juice)
  • 1 green chilli (chopped)
  • a bunch of fresh parsley(about 1/2 cup, finely chopped)
  • a bunch of fresh mint (about 1/2 cup, finely chopped)
  • a bunch of fresh coriander (about 1/2 cup, finely chopped)
  • pepper, salt

To convert measurements, check Cups&Spoons.

Preparation time: 45 minutes

Cut eggplants into cubes of 2×2 cm. Mix it in a bowl with the oil and about 1/2 tbsp of salt. Eggplant generally soaks up a lot of oil, make sure to use enough, other wise it will have a spongy texture. Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees. Spread the eggplant cubes on a baking pan with baking paper and strew some freshly ground pepper. Bake it for about 30 minutes or until it gets soft and a bit grilled.

Meanwhile mix the yoghurt, lemon juice, onion, chilli and fresh herbs in a big bowl. When the eggplant is ready, let it cool down a bit and mix it with the yoghurt dip. Adjust salt if necessary.

Turkish Eggplant Salad

We usually serve this salad in pita bread with some vegetables and fried seitan gyros or smoked tofu. All my dinner guests have liked it so far. Iyi iştah!

Mexican Gourmand Quinoa Salad

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Paris Supermarket PurchaseOn our trips we always go through street markets and supermarkets looking for some inspiration for future recipes. This time we found a great mix of red&white quinoa and bulgur in our neighbourhood’s Simply Market in Paris. Both are rather rich in fiber, minerals and calcium, thus, a must in every vegetarian diet.

We happily bought one package and managed to take it back home, even though the giant Sikh security guard at the airport was examining it carefully. In Munich the mix was challenging us to turn it into something more interesting than a simple garnish. I really like Salsa Mexicana, or Pico de Gallo (=Peak of the Rooster=), as we call it in Mexico.  This salad, the main inspiration for today’s recipe, is a mixture of  diced tomatoes, onions, coriander and lemon juice.


MEXICAN QUINOA SALAD

Ingredients (4-6 portions)

  • 1 cup of Quinoa Gourmand mix (60% bulgur, 40% red and white quinoa)
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tbsp of salt
  • 5-6 medium sized tomatoes
  • 1 big onion
  • 4 tbsp of fresh coriander (chopped)
  • 4 tbsp of fresh parsley (chopped)
  • 4 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 lime
  • 1 clove of garlic
    To convert measurements, check Cups&Spoons.

Preparation time: 20 minutes

Bring water to boil, add salt and then the quinoa mix. Cook it for about 15 minutes or until water evaporates completely. Dice the onion and tomatoes and chop the fresh herbs. Let the quinoa cool down before mixing it with the rest of the ingredients, you wouldn’t want it to become pulpy. Adjust salt if necessary.

Mexican Quinoa Salad

We usually eat it with roasted cheese, tofu or seitan. Bon appétit!