VEGAN SHEPHERD'S PIE and GLUTEN FREE/VEGAN SPICED APPLE BREAKFAST CAKE
VEGAN SHEPHERD'S PIE - serves 6
1 medium onion (diced)
- 2 cloves garlic (minced)
- 1 1/2 cups uncooked brown or green lentils (rinsed and drained)
- 4 cups vegetable stock (DIY or store-bought)
- 2 tsp fresh thyme (or sub 1 tsp dried thyme per 2 tsp fresh)
- 1 10-ounce bag frozen mixed veggies: peas, carrots, green beans, and corn
- 3 pounds yukon gold potatoes, partially peeled (thoroughly washed)
- 3-4 Tbsp vegan butter
- Salt and pepper (to taste)
Slice any large potatoes in half, place in a large pot and fill with water until they’re just covered. Bring to a low boil on medium high heat, then generously salt, cover and cook for 20-30 minutes or until they slide off a knife very easily.
Once cooked, drain, add back to the pot to evaporate any remaining water, then transfer to a mixing bowl. Use a masher, pastry cutter or large fork to mash until smooth. Add add desired amount of vegan butter (2-4 Tbsp as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size), and season with salt and pepper to taste. Loosely cover and set aside.
While potatoes are cooking, preheat oven to 425 degrees F (218 C) and lightly grease a 2-quart baking dish (or comparable sized dish, such as 9x13 pan. An 8x8 won’t fit it all but close! // as original recipe is written // adjust number or size of dish if altering batch size).
In a large saucepan over medium heat, sauté onions and garlic in 1 Tbsp olive oil (amounts as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) until lightly browned and caramelized - about 5 minutes.
Add a pinch each salt and pepper. Then add lentils, stock, and thyme and stir. Bring to a low boil. Then reduce heat to simmer. Continue cooking until lentils are tender (35-40 minutes).
In the last 10 minutes of cooking, add the frozen veggies, stir, and cover to meld the flavors together.
OPTIONAL: To thicken the mixture, add 2-3 Tbsp (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) mashed potatoes and stir. Alternatively, scoop out 1/2 of the mixture and whisk in 2 Tbsp (amount as original recipe is written // adjust if altering batch size) cornstarch or arrowroot powder and whisk. Return to the pan and whisk to thicken.
Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Then transfer to your prepared oven-safe baking dish and carefully top with mashed potatoes. Smooth down with a spoon or fork and season with another crack of pepper and a little sea salt.
Place on a baking sheet to catch overflow and bake for 10-15 minutes or until the mashers are lightly browned on top.
Let cool briefly before serving. The longer it sits, the more it will thicken. Let cool completely before covering, and then store in the fridge for up to a few days. Reheats well in the microwave.
SPICED APPLE BREAKFAST CAKE - GLUTEN FREE & VEGAN - 9 slices
1 1/2 batches flax eggs (1 ½ Tbsp (11 g) flaxseed meal + 3 ¾ Tbsp (56 ml) water as original recipe is written)
- 1/4 cup olive oil (if avoiding oil, try subbing a little nut butter or applesauce)
- 1/3 cup mashed very ripe banana
- 1/4 cup maple syrup
- 1/2 cup brown sugar (or sub coconut sugar, but it’s not as sweet and the texture may be more dense)
- 1/2 tsp sea salt
- 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
- 1/2 cup plain unsweetened almond milk (or other dairy-free milk)
- 1 heaping cup (packed) grated carrot
- 1/2 cup finely grated apple
- 2/3 cup gluten-free rolled oats
- 1 1/2 tsp baking soda
- 1/2 cup almond meal (or flour)
- 1 heaping cup gluten-free flour blend
- 1/4 cup raw walnuts (chopped // for topping)
- 1 1/4 cup raw cashews (soaked in very hot water for 30 minutes)
- 1 Tbsp coconut oil (melted // optional - helps the frosting firm up when chilled)
- 1/4 cup full-fat coconut milk (or sub light // if avoiding coconut, sub almond or rice )
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 3 Tbsp maple syrup (plus more to taste)
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
Prepare flax eggs in a large mixing bowl (by mixing water and flax seed and letting it rest for 5 minutes). Also preheat oven to 375 degrees F (190 C) and line an 8 x 8 inch baking dish or similar size pan.
To flax eggs, add olive oil, mashed banana, and maple syrup and whisk to combine. Next add brown sugar, salt, and cinnamon and whisk to combine.
Add almond milk and stir. Then add grated carrot and apple and stir.
Add oats, baking soda, almond meal (or flour), and gluten-free flour blend and stir to combine (see photo). You should have a thick but pourable batter - add more almond milk to thin if needed or more gluten-free flour or almond meal to thicken.
Pour into prepared baking dish and top with crushed walnuts. Bake for 40-45 minutes on a center rack or until deep golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. When you press on the top, it shouldn’t feel too spongey, so don’t be afraid of over-baking! The GF blend just takes longer to bake than glutenous cakes.
Remove from oven and let rest in the pan for 15 minutes. Then gently lift out of the pan and let cool completely on a wire baking rack or flat surface. The longer it cools, the more airy and light the cake becomes.
OPTIONAL: While this is happening, you can make your frosting by adding soaked, drained cashews, coconut oil, coconut milk, lemon, maple syrup, and vanilla extract to a high-speed blender and blending on high until creamy and smooth. Taste and adjust sweetness or tartness as needed by adding more maple syrup or lemon juice, respectively. Then refrigerate to firm. Wait to frost the cake until frosting has thickened (about 2 hours), and the cake has cooled completely.
Store completely cooled leftovers loosely covered at room temperature up to 3 days, 5 days in the refrigerator (if frosted, it does need to be refrigerated), or in the freezer up to 1 month. Best when fresh.