WARNING: the foods we cook for Abby are safe for her, but not necessarily for everyone. Please confirm any ingredients are safe for you before using in your diet. Food Allergies can kill and the best policy is complete avoidance. Read this post for more info.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Spicy Nofu Pepperoni (gluten free, corn-free, soy-free,egg-free, nut and seed free, dairy free and Meat free!)

At first I thought I would attempt this with chicken because my preference is chicken, but all the recipes I saw recommended letting the spice saturate for at least a day in the fridge, and we have found Abby doesn't do well with chicken that has sat thawed for too long. Plus, always worrying about bacteria and food borne illnesses with chicken. Another terrific bonus with nofu is that since it isn't meat you can taste the product while mixing to make sure you like the amount of seasoning and adjust as needed.

I had made a batch of chickpea tofu(Nofu)this morning and figured,a good time to give my ideas a shot.

My family thought for sure I had really lost my mind when they saw me mixing,smoking, wrapping,baking- until they smelled it and it smelled like real pepperoni. Until they ate a piece even before a quick fry and offered to eat the whole "practice" roll. I see myself making a TON of this healthy low to no fat,chemical free, vegan,allergy free, alternative to meat based pepperoni in the future.

Of course the texture is not the same, it is after all nofu and not meat, but the baking and drying firmed it up tight and it works great.

1 1/2 cup of chickpea nofu

2 teaspoons paprika
2 teaspoons sumac(it is a deep red brown color and has a lovely deep flavor which I thought would help add richness)
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard seed
1/2 teaspoon fennel(I roughly ground it, I thought flecks would be nice to add to the texture)
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flake(again roughly ground)
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon Braggs Apple cider vinegar
2-3 Tablespoons of chickpea flour(just in case)

In a bowl combine all the spices. Roughly mash your slices of chickpea tofu(or soy tofu) and mix with spices. You want it well combined but those little bits of nofu that are not mixing in are terrific! They will help contribute to the texture and "authentic" visual of trying to mimic pepperoni.

I used a yogurt cheese strainer and lined it with cotton muslin. I spooned my nofu mix into the muslin and tied the muslin. I put the cover on and placed in the fridge.(next round I may skip this step in the strainer and just cover it and place in fridge overnight for the flavors to meld. I still ended up having to add some chickpea flour so trying to strain was pointless)

24 hours later I removed the slightly firmer nofu(mush) and placed on a couple pieces of tinfoil. I used my gas grill and "smoked" it while it sat in the foil for about 1 hour. (you can skip this step, and it will still be delicious!)

Once it cooled down it was still too soft to form(if you have firm nofu or tofu you may not need this step,my nofu was pretty wet this batch)so I mixed in 3 Tablespoons of chickpea flour until it was a dough that could be rolled into a log.

I rolled it into a piece of lightly greased tinfoil to look like a tootsie roll. Baked at 325 for 30 minutes, allowed to cool.

I then placed it on a fresh piece of muslin that I first spritzed with grapeseed oil. I wrapped it tightly like a tootsie roll tying off both ends with kitchen cotton. I then removed all the racks but the very top one in my dehydrator and tied the roll to the underside of the rack so it was hanging down and swinging freely. I dehydrated around 100 degrees for around just 2 hours.

Done. Tasted exactly like pepperoni and the texture with all the roughly ground spices was close enough as well. I sliced thinly and fried lightly in coconut oil till slightly crisp. The one major difference was pepperoni is usually greasy- figured while I was on a roll I would replicate that too! Ready for a gluten free tomato free pizza!


Circus of 6 said...

You never cease to amaze me my friend!! Love it!!

Diane said...

Ty Jaime! Either I am on a roll, or have lost my mind! :-) I was really surprised at how tasty this turned out to be! Even right out of the oven I probably could have stopped but I already figured out how to throw it in the dehydrator so seemed a shame not to try out my idea :-)

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