Superfood Nuts (Sterling, 2017) by Connie Diekman and Vicki Chelf uses nutrient-rich nuts in every recipe to produce a vegan cookbook that shows chefs at home that being vegan can be just as fun and flavorful as any diet. The two authors give a rundown of each nut’s nutritional benefits before launching into their colorful cookbook. The following excerpt is their Curry-Spiced Pistachio Crusted Potato Cake recipe.
These are delicious with a tofu, tempeh, or lentil dish and a salad. Increase the spiciness as you like by adding more cayenne, or reduce the spiciness with less—or remove the spiciness by omitting the cayenne altogether. If the cakes are not all going to be eaten when you make the recipe, wrap the leftovers in waxed paper or in a container with waxed paper between the potato cake layers, and cook them when you are ready to serve them.
• 2 teaspoons olive oil
• 5 cloves minced garlic
• 1 tablespoon grated ginger
• 2 teaspoons cumin seeds
• 2 teaspoons garam masala
• 2 teaspoons turmeric
• Pinch of cayenne, or to taste
• 1/2 cup pistachios, coarsely ground
• 2 tablespoons olive oil, or as needed
1. Cook the potatoes in water to cover until tender. Drain and reserve 1/4 cup of the cooking water. Mash the potatoes, adding in the 1/4 cup cooking water.
2. While the potatoes are cooking, heat 2 teaspoons oil in a small saucepan. Add the garlic, ginger, and cumin seeds. Cook, stirring often, until the garlic begins to brown, then add the garam masala, and turmeric, and cayenne. Stir and cook for a minute or so more.
3. Add the spices to the mashed potatoes and mix well.
4. When the mixture is cool enough to handle, shape it into patties that are approximately 3 inches in diameter.
5. Place the pistachios on a small plate and dip each patty into the nuts to coat on both sides. Set aside.
6. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil, or more as needed, in a large skillet and place about half the patties in the skillet. Press them down slightly with a spatula to press in the nuts. Cook until each patty is crispy brown on the bottom. Turn them over and cook on the other side. Keep the cooked patties in a warm oven while you cook the rest.
Note: I cook potatoes for this sort of recipe in a pressure cooker with only a cup or two of water. They turn out perfect and you are not throwing out the minerals in the cooking water, because there will not be much left. But if you prefer, you can boil them.
More from: Superfood Nuts• Sweet Potato Pie Smoothie Recipe
Reprinted with permission from Superfood Nuts, by Connie Diekman and Vicki Chelf and published by Sterling Publishing, 2017.