Vegan Grandma

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

"Thousand’s of doctors now believe vivisection is just cruel and bad science that delays finding a cure and often gives wrong results."-Dr. Herbert Hensel, Director of the institute of Physiology at Marburg University

"According to the FDA, 92 percent of drugs tested safe and effective in animals fail during human trials."-from Good Medicine, The Physicians Committee for responsible Medicine’s publication, Summer 2006.

Before you donate to a charity, please visit , a Physicians Committee For Responsible Medicine site, to find out if the charity supports testing on animals
Burmese-Style Tofu, Vegan Chick Pea Flour Pancakes, and Some Interesting Things About Chick Pea Flour

I found the following recipe at .
I think this is an interesting recipe. After the chickpea tofu was made, I just cut it into squares and baked it at 425 degrees F. , 15 minutes on one side, and 10 minutes on the other side, until both sides were golden brown. It was crispy on the outside and custard-like on the inside, and a bit puffy. I ate it jplain, ust as it was, and it tasted really good. I want to experiment with it more, to find out different ways to use it. I think you could add any herbs or aromatic vegetables such as onions or garlic, just before you boil the liquid (step 5).

Chickpea flour, also called besan flour or garam flour is made from ground, dried chickpeas. It is available at Indian grocery stores. You can grind your own if you have a bread mill. Don’t try to use a coffee mill or blender, or you will damage the blades.

Burmese-Style Tofu

3 cups Chick-pea flour (besan flour, garam flour)

15 cups water

1 tsp. vegetable oil

1/4 tsp. ground tumeric

1 tsp. salt

1. Mix the chick-pea flour and water together with a whisk or eggbeater. Let stand overnight, about 12 hours.

2. Next day, strain the mixture through a thin cotton cloth slowly. Scrape out the residue from the cloth and discard it. Let the balance of the liquid settle for 3 hours.

3. With a soup ladle, carefully remove 6 cups of liquid from the top of the mixture without disturbing the balance. Discard the 6 cups liquid you have removed.

4. Rub the bottom of a large pan with the oil. Pour in almost all of the balance of the liquid (9 cups) and add the turmeric and salt. What remains in the original pan is thick chick-pea sludge, about a cup. This should be reserved in a bowl for future use.

5. Bring to a boil the 9 cups of liquid and cook over moderate heat for 30 minutes, stirring continuously. At this time, add the chick-pea sludge, which is a thickening agent, and continue to cook over low heat for 10 minutes more, stirring the thick mixture firmly. Remove the pan from
the heat.

6. Turn out the mixture into a tray 12x4 inches and 3 inches deep, lined with a clean, cotton cloth. Cool completely, uncovered, overnight. At this stage, you may slice the firm tofu into pieces of whatever size you wish. It is ready to use.

To make a salad- A few pieces of tofu, some shredded cabbage, onion slices, crispy onions, and oil, tamarind paste, toasted chick-pea powder ad mix everything together. Sprinkle chopped coriander leaves on top.

To fry- Cut the tofu into 2 inch square pieces 2/3 inch thick and deep fry them in oil for a few seconds.

Vegan Chick Pea Flour Pancakes

This recipe comes from World Vegetarian, by Madhur Jaffrey, published by Clarkson/Potter Publishers, New York, page 37.

These are popular in parts of India. They can be mixed with flavorings such as herbs, peppers, onions, etc. Serve them at breakfast or as a snack with relishes or chutneys. You can wrap things inside of these pancakes such as potato, beans, or salsas.

2 cups chickpea flour

1 teaspoon ground cumin seeds

1/4 teaspoon ground turmeric

1/4 to ½ teaspoon cayenne1 teaspoon salt

6 to 7 tablespoons peanut or canola oil for cooking the pancakes

2 cups of water

Sift the chickpea flour, cumin, turmeric, cayenne, and salt into a medium mixing bowl. Very slowly, stir in 2 cups of water with a wooden spoon, stop adding water while the batter is still past-like, then press the lumps on the side of the bowl to break them, then slowly add the rest of the water.

Set the batter aside for 30 minutes, the strain it through a sieve if it is still lumpy.

Put 1 teaspoon oil in a 5 ½ to 6-inch nonstick frying pan and place over medium-high heat. When the pan is hot, stir the batter from the bottom and ladle about 1/4 cup into the frying pan.

Tilt the frying pan around to spread out the batter. Dribble another teaspoon of oil on the top. Cook the pancake for about 2 minutes, or until the bottom has golden-red spots. Turn the pancake over and cook the other side for a minute, or until it also has golden-red spots. Remove to a plate and keep covered with an overturned plate. Continue making pancakes, stirring the batter from the bottom each time, before ladling the batter into the frying pan. Serve immediately.

Vegan Chickpea Pancakes With Sesame Seeds-As soon as you pour the batter into the frying pan, sprinkle the top with about ½ teaspoon of sesame seeds ( black or beige). When you turn the pancake over, the seeds will toast slightly.

Some Interesting Things About Chick Pea Flour

Chickpea flour, also called besan flour or garam flour is made from ground, dried chickpeas.

Chickpea flour is commonly used throughout India, North Africa, and parts of the Mediterranean.

Chickpea flour is available at Indian grocery stores. You can grind your own if you have a bread mill. Don’t try to use a coffee mill or blender, or you will damage the blades.

Chickpea flour is high in protein.

Chickpea flour is traditionally used in batters for vegetable fritters (pakoras) and savories working as a binding agent. Many Indian sweets are made from chickpea flour. It is to an Indian kitchen what egg is to a western kitchen.

A few teaspoons of roasted chickpea flour is sometimes added to stir-fried vegetables to add a nutty flavor, texture, and nutrition. Roast chickpea flour by stirring it around in a cast-iron frying pan for a few minutes over medium heat until it is a medium brown color. Add it to the stir-fried vegetables when they are almost cooked. Stir-fry the vegetables for another minute.

Chickpea flour can be used as a thickener for stews, either raw, or sauteed in oil first, which gives it a nice aroma. Once browned, add boiling water to the flour while stirring briskly with a whisk to break up lumps.

Chickpea flour forms lumps easily when liquids are added. To prevent this, sift the flour into a bowl, very slowly pour in the liquid, according to the recipe, while briskly stirring with a wooden spoon. While the mixture is still a thick paste, stop adding the liquid, stir briskly, and try to break up all of the lumps, pressing them against the bowl. Add the rest of the liquid, a little faster now. Let the batter sit for 30 minutes. This should remove the rest of the lumps. You can strain the batter through a sieve if there are still lumps.

Always stir the batter from the bottom before using.


World Vegetarian, by Madhur Jaffrey, published by Clarkson/Potter Publishers, New York

Sundays at Moosewood Restaurant, by The Moosewood Collective, published by Simon and Schuster