I’ve been holed up in our little cabin for the last two weeks because of a flu I picked up on our trip to Vancouver at the end of February. No…it’s not THAT flu, but I sure felt like hell for a couple of weeks. I’m almost back to my old self again, but it looks like we’ll be staying put for at least a couple more weeks because of the global pandemic.
And, sadly, I had to miss the Frazey Ford concert to which I was very much looking forward. James reported on a wonderful evening with Bob and Susan, however, and a fabulous meal at the entirely plant-based restaurant, Eve Olive. They’ve promised me we’ll all go again when we’re allowed to leave the house and sit closer than one metre apart.
So far, Denman has no cases of the novel corona virus, and Vancouver Island has only one and that’s very much south of us in Victoria; nevertheless, apparently the stores in Courtenay-Comox are overcrowded and running low on supplies.
Anyway, I’ve had LOTS of time to cook, so I’ve been trying out new recipes, and we’ve been enjoying some rather fabulous feasts. As you know, I made Gaz Oakley’s seitan steak a month or so ago and have been trying a few different recipes with it, one of which I will share with you today: an entirely plant-based version of Dash’s Famous Halifax Donair!
According to allrecipes.com…
“In the early 70’s, a Greek restaurateur in the city of Halifax introduced the Donair. Within a few short years, virtually all pizzerias had added their version of the dish to their menus. Not to be confused with gyros, the Donair has a vastly different flavor. Originally the dish was made with ground lamb, but this proved too costly and ground beef was later substituted. Technically, this resulted in an aberration of sorts, as the final product was not what the originator had intended. What resulted, however, is the legendary East Coast Donair.”
I consulted several recipes and learned that the meat is basically ground beef mixed with spices and baked into a dense meatloaf and then sliced into thin strips. So I figured I could slice up one of my seitan steaks into thin strips, toss it with the appropriate spices and tapioca flour and saute it in a teensy bit of oil.
According to various recipes, Dash’s Halifax Donairs are drizzled with a sweet garlicky sauce made of condensed milk, lots of white sugar, vinegar, and garlic powder. I adjusted this to make it both vegan and healthy by replacing the condensed milk with cashews and almond milk and replacing the sugar with medjool dates. Now, the sauce should be white, but mine is a bit pink from the dates. It does taste delicious, however! No idea how close it is to the original, but it got the double seal of approval from us!
So….here we go!
Make these amazing vegan pitas! Alternatively, you can buy the pita (but warm, freshly made pitas are SO good!).
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/2 cup cashews
- 6 medjool dates
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- 2 tsp garlic powder
Blend in the Vitamix until smoooooooth.
Next, you’ll want to chop up some…
- iceberg lettuce
The Donair “Meat”
- 12-ounce seitan steak, sliced in strips
- 2 portobello mushrooms, sliced
- 2 TBS tapioca flour
- 2 TBS water
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
Mix the spices, water, and tapioca flour in the Magic Bullet and pour in a bowl with the seitan strips and mushrooms; mix well so the strips and mushrooms are well coated. Spray a saute pan with a bit of oil and saute until browned and heated through.
Now, the assembly:
For each donair, take a freshly baked pita, place a handful of the chopped onions, tomatoes, and lettuce on top; place some of the donair “meat” and mushrooms on top, drizzle with some of that sweet donair sauce, fold in half and EAT THAT SUCKER UP!!
Serve it with some Greek salad because that’s what we did!
Oh, and now for the Chocolate Mousse!! This dessert is SO good that you won’t believe how quick and easy it is to make.
All you do is microwave for one minute….
- 1/2 cup almond milk
- 1/2 cup chocolate chips
Then dump it in the Vitamix with…
- 1 12-ounce package of silken tofu
- 1 tsp vanilla
- a nice big blob of peanut butter
…and blend like hell until super smooth. Decant into six ramekins, top with a few extra chocolate chips and refrigerate for an hour or two. The texture is amazing! This is my new favourite dessert. Oddly, James would not even taste it, so I got to eat one every night until they were gone. I think he objected to the peanut butter, so I’ll have to remember to add it every time!
And the song of the day is The Cranberries “Zombie” because as I was saying to James today, it kind of feels a bit like the Zombie Apocalypse is going on out there these days: