When I moved to this side of the pond, I was introduced to the Full English breakfast, vegan style.
A full English breakfast is typically sausages, bacon, hash browns, eggs, baked beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast, along with coffee (or tea) and fruit juice. Anyone partaking of this cholesterol extravaganza will usually be able to hear their smaller arteries slamming shut partway through the meal.
Vegan versions are fairly widely available, though they’re usually abbreviated to hash browns, baked beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast. If you’re lucky, vegan sausages will be available, and if the gods are smiling down on you, vegan bacon will also be on the menu.
This morning, I decided to make my own version of the full English vegan breakfast. Homemade breakfast sausages, hash browns, tofu scramble, baked beans, mushrooms, tomatoes and toast, along with coffee and fruit juice. I haven’t experimented with homemade bacon (yet), and couldn’t find any in the shops, so that wasn’t included.
The tofu scramble used the same recipe as the one I’d made last week (except I was out of lemons and therefore lemon juice, but I couldn’t say I noticed a difference). The breakfast sausages had been made the day before. I tried a new recipe for hash browns, and it was the most successful yet, though it does require precooking the potato the day before. The beans were organic ones from a jar, and the mushrooms and tomatoes were simply fried with a bit of vegan margarine and seasoned with salt and pepper.
Needless to say, it was delicious, and I’m happy to report that not only were no arteries closed during the meal, but my karma survived brilliantly. What more could one want on a cold February morning?
Seitan breakfast sausages
|30g||ground almonds||5 tablespoons|
|1 tablespoon||soy sauce||1 tablespoon|
|1||vegan chicken-style bouillon cube||1|
|(enough for 2 cups water)|
|3 tablespoons||rapeseed (canola) oil||3 tablespoons|
|34g||finely chopped onion||1/4 cup|
|1 tablespoon||nutritional yeast||1 tablespoon|
|1 teaspoon||minced fresh garlic||1 teaspoon|
|1-1/2 teaspoons||dried sage leaf||1-1/2 teaspoons|
|1/2 teaspoon||dried marjoram||1/2 teaspoon|
|1/2 teaspoon||dried basil||1/2 teaspoon|
|1/2 teaspoon||dried oregano||1/2 teaspoon|
|1/2 teaspoon||freshly ground black pepper||1/2 teaspoon|
|1/2 teaspoon||salt||1/2 teaspoon|
|1/4 teaspoon||dried thyme||1/4 teaspoon|
|1/4 teaspoon||fresh (or dried) rosemary||1/4 teaspoon|
|160g||vital wheat gluten flour||1 cup + 3 tablespoons|
1. If you’re starting with whole almonds, grind them in the blender first while it’s still clean and dry, then remove and set aside.
2. Crumble the tofu into the blender. Put the bouillon cube into a glass measuring cup and add a couple of tablespoons of boiling water; stir to dissolve the cube. Add soy sauce to measuring cup, then add enough water so the mixture equals 100ml (6-1/2 tablespoons). Add this to the blender.
3. Add remaining ingredients to blender EXCEPT gluten. Blenderise until completely smooth. Empty into a large mixing bowl.
4. Add gluten and mix well, until you have a uniform soft dough.
5. Divide dough into 12 or 16 pieces, depending on how big you want your sausages. (I made 12 this time.) Roll each piece into a sausage shape. Wrap each sausage in parchment paper and then in either aluminium foil or cheesecloth. Lightly twist the ends together if using foil, or tie them with string if using cheesecloth.
6. Bring water to boil in a pot that has a steamer insert. Arrange wrapped sausages in your steamer insert. If using foil, arrange with seam side down as this reduces the likelihood of a foil blowout. Packing the sausages tightly in the steamer also reduces this chance. I arranged six sausages on the bottom of the steamer insert, then another six at a 90 degree angle on top of them.
7. Steam for 40 minutes over gently simmering water. If you’ve arranged your sausages in two layers, switch their positions halfway through the cooking time (bottom ones on top and top ones on bottom). Turn heat off and let cool.
8. To cook, gently pan fry until golden.
Can be frozen for future use (leave them wrapped and place in a plastic freezer bag).
Makes 12 to 16 sausages.
Homemade hash browns
Plan ahead, as the potato needs to be pre-cooked the day before.
|170g||floury potato||6 ounce|
|1 tablespoon||minced fresh onion||1 tablespoon|
|1||small garlic clove, minced (optional)||1|
|to taste||salt and freshly ground pepper||to taste|
|olive oil for frying|
1. The day before, steam potato (unpeeled) for 20 minutes, until tender (some firmness in the center is okay). Cool, then refrigerate in a plastic bag overnight.
2. The next day, grate potato using a coarse grater, discarding any large pieces of skin. Put in a large bowl. Add minced onion, garlic (if using), plus salt and pepper to taste. You can also season with herbs.
3. Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium-low heat. Add a tablespoon or so of olive oil. Form potatoes into three patties and fry until golden brown, then carefully flip and fry the other side. Keep in a warm oven if not eating immediately.
Makes 3 patties, enough for 2 or 3 servings.