Saturday, December 15, 2012

Vegan Bierocks

This recipe is from Vegan Sandwiches Save The Day by Tamasin Noyes and Celine Steen.

Recipe: see page 88 of Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day.
Sorry it has taken so long to post another photo. Here's the deal, I've been meaning to make this for the last two weeks and have had a can of sauerkraut out on the kitchen sink all this time. I got sick and lost my appetite, and every time I looked over and saw that can of sauerkraut waiting for me it made me woozy.

I've never had sauerkraut before. I don't know why I was being such a baby. Even after I got better, about ten days ago, I didn't want to go near it for fear it would make me barf. I have no idea why. People can be weird about their predispositions about certain foods, and I'm no different. But I was committed to giving this recipe a shot, and the picture of bierocks in Vegan Sandwiches Save the Day was too tantalizing to resist.

Bierocks are a German-inspired sandwich, which is also popular in Argentina. I was reading on Wikipedia that they are similar to pierogis, which are also from Eastern Europe. Bierocks are fresh baked buns with meat, cabbage, sauerkraut and carrots baked in the center as a filling.  In this vegan version of bierocks, the meat is replaced with tempeh.

I didn't think I would like it, but this was really tasty. The bread contained caraway seeds and beer, so it kind of reminded me of fresh rye bread, dark and hearty, but not too strong. The filling was tangy, as the flavors of the mustard and sauerkraut really came through, and combined with the tempeh everything was soft and chewy. Fresh out of the oven, with the smell of the bread, a cold beer and some mustard, these were amazing.

The recipe makes 8, and they store well and can be kept in the fridge until they are ready to be reheated, but they are definitely better served out of the oven because of the fresh bread smell.

Even though it feels like an extra effort (most of the cooking time on this recipe is waiting. Waiting for the tempeh to marinate, waiting for the bread to rise...), it's worth it because you can knock out a week's worth of lunch sandwiches at one time.

(for filling) tempeh (Trader Joe's Organic 3-Grain Tempeh is used here), sauerkraut, vegetable broth, red wine vinegar, tomato paste, tamari, onion powder, cumin seeds, paprika, fennel seeds, lemon pepper, garlic, vegan Worcestershire sauce, olive oil, onion, green cabbage, carrot, Dijon mustard, salt, pepper. 

(for buns) all purpose flour, light brown sugar, instant yeast, sea salt, caraway seeds, dark vegan beer, nondairy butter (Earth Balance used here).