Thursday, April 5, 2012

Robin Sauce

We have a crazy male robin attacking our window starting each morning around 5. It started a couple weeks ago and now he is like my alarm clock. At first I was worried this protective papa was going to get hurt, then I worried our etched glass windows were not going to hold up to his assault. We tried everything to ease his anxiety (we assume he sees his reflection in our not so clean windows and is protecting his chicks from his imaginary foe). We put up blankets on the windows, placed stuffed animals in the window sills, etc. but he would just find another window. On my last count he regularly goes at seven of our windows on three sides of our house. He is one tenacious fellow. I had hear his brood chirping from their next and I'm hoping they take flight soon so this rabid robin can take a rest.

I think I've mentioned before that Rob is not a huge fan of "yellow sauces". He likes tahini based sauce and would eat that every day, but the higher the nutritional yeast and the less garlic the more likely he is to give it a "so-so" rating. He does really like Raw Red Pepper Aioli (Eat, Drink, and Be Vegan) and Three-Nut Cheeze Whiz (Quick-Fix Vegan) so this week I made a fusion sauce with both of these in mind.

A friend who is new to veganism was asking some questions about what we eat and I forgot to get into the magic of sauces. If you have a couple sauces you enjoy then the possibilities are endless. Sauces are like soups. Once you know the framework you enjoy, you can make it different each time based on what you have around. Then serve it over different things to make completely different dishes. This one I served over whole wheat pasta shells, broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots served on a bed of garlicky kale and garnished with red pepper flakes and gomasio. It would work equally well with quinoa and baked tofu (and veggies, of course - asparagus and Brussels sprouts come to mind). It would also make a good sandwich spread. Since robins are on my mind and this recipe is full of seeds and as a nod to Robin Robertson who created the Three-Nut Cheeze Whiz recipe in her awesome Quick-Fix Vegan, I am calling this version Robin Sauce. The sauce also turns out to be close to to color of our crazed robin's breast.
Robin Sauce
1 cup roasted cashews (raw would work too, I just happened to have roasted this time)
1/3 cup raw pumpkin seeds
1/3 cup sunflower seeds
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
1 cup unsweetened plain almond milk (I usually just put a cup of raw almonds and two or three cups of water in the Vitamix if I don't have almond milk on hand, but this time I used a new almond, cashew, hazelnut blend beverage)
4 cloves garlic
1 Tablespoon walnuts
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons tahini
1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon yellow mustard
1/4 teaspoon iodized salt (or to taste)
1 raw red pepper (seeded)

All of this goes into a Vitamix or equally awesome blender and blend until smooth. If you don't have a strong blender then soak the nuts and seeds for an hour.

Now those of you who read me regularly know that I don't just throw extra ingredients into a recipe without a reason - usually based on nutrition. Raw pumpkin seeds (pepitas) are high in iron as well as good fats and protein, etc. The red pepper is high in vitamin C (and vitamin A, etc.) and we all should know by now that vitamin C aids the absorption of iron. Why do we care? If I use salt, I used iodized sea salt because we don't really eat enough sea veggies to rely on them for this important nutrient. The kale adds calcium and lots of other lovely things. Walnuts are great for omega three fatty acids. I'm sure I don't have to go on, you get the picture.


Robin at Vegan Planet said...

I'm so honored to have a sauce named after me! Thank you! <3

VeganLinda said...

I should name most of what me make after you since you are often our inspiration! :-)