There’s a heat wave in LA. And this refreshing drink is my saving grace. It is also a bit of an apothecary, as this tea, made with gorgeous golden turmeric and ginger root are both known for their anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties.
Besides the health benefits, I drink this tea all day, because it is so good! I make it in concentrated batches, and dilute them with water and ice. Though this tea would be wonderful warm as well, with a little almond or coconut milk. I know the black pepper is kind of a weird ingredient in this recipe. The simple answer is that black pepper helps the body absorb turmeric. I didn’t want to bog down this blog post with a lot of healthy talk – but there’s plenty of information on the internet about how super healthy these ingredients are and why.
Now onto the recipe.
4 cups water
1/2-1 tspn turmeric powder, or freshly grated turmeric
About 1 inch chunk of peeled and sliced ginger root
A few dashes of black pepper
Honey to taste
Combine the water, turmeric, ginger and black pepper in a pot. Bring to a boil, and then simmer for about 10 minutes. Let cool slightly, add honey to taste. Pour the concentrate through a tea strainer into a container, such as a mason jar. For a cold drink, add a little of the concentrate to cold water (ice optional). It’s really up to you to choose the water to tea ratio. I make it with about a quarter cup of tea to 1 ¾ cups of water. Once the concentrate has cooled, you may store it in the fridge. One large mason jar lasts me a couple of days, and then I quickly make more. Sip and enjoy!
This week, I was tantalized by a recipe I stumbled upon on The First Mess, a beautiful blog filled with many wholesome and delicious recipes, and wonderful food photography. The thing that really caught my eye, was the word “Old Bay seasoning” in the title of the recipe. Old Bay seasoning has a dear place in my heart, as my boyfriend turned me onto it, and then then I discovered it in my Christmas stocking from him that winter. It is great on roasted potatoes, eggs, beans, and anything with a mild taste (It was originally invented as a crab boil; my boyfriend attests it’s excellent on shellfish as well as chicken).
The photos on the blog were so tantalizing, and I am a sucker for a good veggie burger, plus my friend Stephanie was coming over for dinner this week, and I knew she would love for me to try the recipe out on her.
It is a bit involved. But the directions seemed more complex than the experience making them. Put on some good music, have a lovely beverage to sip on and have fun making these Chickpea & Cauliflower Veggie Patties with Vegan Cashew Lemon Spread. I made some personalizations to the original recipe by adding cayenne and turmeric for added flavor and a healthful boost.
Chickpea & Cauliflower Veggie Patties with Vegan Cashew Lemon Spread
Makes 4 patties
2 cups cauliflower florets
2 cups cooked chickpeas (I used canned)
1 clove of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
1 tbsp Old Bay seasoning
1 tspn turmeric
dash cayenne pepper
1 tbsp olive oil
squeeze of lemon juice salt + pepper to taste, keeping in mind Old Bay is pretty salty
1/4 cup + 3 tablespoons chickpea flour
1/2 of a shallot, chopped (original recipe called for 1/3 cup chopped chives)
Cashew Lemon Spread ingredients:
1 cup raw cashews, soaked for at least 4 hours
1 tbsp lemon juice
splash of vinegar (original recipe called for white wine vinegar, I used rice vinegar)
2 tsp dijon mustard (I used hot horseradish mustard)
2 tbsp-1/3 cup filtered water
dash cayenne pepper
salt to taste
Sandwich ingredients: Feel free to customize to your taste. I made mine with whole wheat pita bread, sliced cherry tomatoes, avocado and fresh arugula.
* The original recipe called for 1/4 cup chickpea flour and 3 tablespoons oat flour, with the option to use all chickpea flour – which is what I did. But if you’d like to use 3 tablespoons oat flour, you can easily grind oats in a food processor, vitamix or spice grinder to make it. Also, if you don’t have Old Bay seasonings (I’ve seen it sold at Target and Cost Plus World Market fyi), here is the link to make it yourself!
Steam cauliflower florets in a steamer basket over a pot of shallow water for 7-8 minutes.
Remove and run some cold water over it to stop the cooking process.
Dry the florets lightly and place them in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the “S” blade.
Add the chickpeas, garlic, Old Bay seasoning, turmeric, cayenne pepper, olive oil, lemon juice, salt + pepper.
Pulse until you have a meal that clumps together when you squeeze it, trying not to blend up all of the chickpeas.
Put the chickpea and cauliflower mixture into a large bowl, add the chickpea flour and chopped shallots until the ingredients are well mix and the flour is absorbed. Adjust the seasonings accordingly, if needed.
Divide the mix into 4 equal portions and form patties with your hands. (This was my favorite part of not using eggs to form patties – no mess!) Wrap the patties tightly with plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator for at least an hour.
In the meantime, make the cashew lemon spread. In a blender, place the cashews (that have been drained and rinsed), lemon juice, vinegar, mustard, salt, and 2 tablespoons of water.
Blend scraping the sides and adding more water if necessary.
The mixture should be a creamy mayo-like consistency. Place the spread into a container, cover, and refrigerate until you’re ready to serve.
Heat the pan over medium high heat, then lower the heat and add some oil in a pan (I used my cast iron pan, but you can certainly use any non-stick pan).
Place a couple of patties in the pan at a time. Flip to the other side once they are lightly browned (this should take a few minutes on each side. Use your spatula to lift and move the patties as they’re browning, to make sure all the underside gets browned. You may keep the patties warm on a parchment lined baking sheet in the oven on a low temperature. I only made two, and kept my unmade patties wrapped in plastic, until they were ready for eating. You can certainly cook them all up at once and reheat as well.
While the patties were cooking, I quickly warmed up pita bread over a medium flame on the stove. This only takes a few seconds – you just have to keep an eye on the pita so as not to burn it.
The first time I made the patties, I cut one patty in half and one pita in half. The second time I made it, I cut the top third of the pita and put an entire patty in. These are options depending on your appetite! It is a lovely, satiating, satisfying meal. Enjoy!