Sunday, March 4, 2012

Vegan Reuben Sandwiches with Pumpernickel Waffles.

The other day I made these delicious pumpernickel waffles. On the vegan gourmet I found an involved recipe for Reuben sandwiches with dark rye bread. The key in the recipe is to replace the corned beef with tempeh slices marinated overnight in a spiced raw beet marinade, and then saute them in a pan with the marinade. Delicious! The combination of pumpernickel waffles, spiced beet juice marinated tempeh, veganaise, melted Daiya mozzarella and unpasteurized sauerkraut, all baked in the oven and eaten warm, was surprisingly scrumptious. 

The original recipe calls for a vegan Russian dressing and horseradish mayonaise, but I left out the Russian dressing and used plain fat reduced veganaise since I did not want to buy all the ingredients for one sandwich. --- I made slight changes to the preparation of the marinated tempeh so that the process is a bit simpler. (In hindsight, I should have reduced the baking time or temperature ;-) it was still delicious although extra crispy). 

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Marinated ‘corned beef’ tempeh:
  • 1 teaspoon whole allspice berries
  • 1 teaspoon coriander seeds
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 4 whole cloves
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
  • 1 teaspoon whole cardamom pods
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • pinch of ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup fresh organic beet juice (see my note below if you cannot find or make fresh beet juice)
  • 4 tablespoons maple or agave syrup
  • pinch of cayenne
  • 1/3 cup unfiltered apple cider vinegar
  • 4 tablespoons organic tamari
  • 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
In a hot dry pan, roast the all  the spices until they get fragrant, then take them off the heat. Mix all the wet ingredients in a small bowl, add the spices, and blend the juices with the spices in the vitamix (alternatively, grind them in a spice grinder or mortar, and mix with the juices).  Slice the tempeh into thin slices, and marinate with the spiced beet juice overnight. For rest, i.e. frying them, follow original recipe

Note: I could not find fresh beet juice, so I mixed the juices of 1 can of canned beets and a 1/3 grated raw beet.  I also left out the olive oil of the original recipe. 

Since I used waffles for the sandwich, a baked version would work better than a pressed sandwich. I built the sandwich the following way: waffle bottom, marinated tempeh, veganaise, daiya mozzarella, and sauerkraut. Top with 1/2 waffle. Bake in oven at 4ooF for 15min or until cheese is gooey (I used 430F, which left the waffles slightly burnt).
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