Levantine Shawarma, Vegan-Style with Tahini Sauce

Spread the veggie love


Shawarma is a Levantine meat preparation cooked on a rotisserie. Shavings of the meat are served in a sandwich, or on a plate with accompaniments such as tabbouleh or fattoush. Shawarma is often eaten as a fast food, made up into a sandwich wrap with flatbread together with vegetables and dressing. A variety of vegetables accompany the shawarma, and can include any combination of cucumber, onion, tomato, lettuce, parsley, pickled turnips, pickles, shredded cabbage or French fries. Please note that while shawarma shares similarities to Greek gyros and Turkish döner kebab, it is seasoned differently and is therefore not the same dish. 

Vegan Levantine Shawarma is prepared using Butler Soy Curls™. When seasoned and prepared properly, this unique product yields an amazing meat analogue (left unseasoned, the strips have an inherent natural sweetness; proper seasoning helps mask this sweetness).

Butler Soy Curls™ have a texture similar to textured soy/vegetable protein chunks but they are fundamentally different because they are made with non-GMO whole soybeans, as opposed to textured soy/vegetable protein, which is the extruded by-product of soybean oil production. As such, they are processed differently and use no solvents in the production process.For gluten-free diets, use wheat-free tamari in the seasoning broth. This recipe yields about 1 and ½ lbs.

Primary Ingredient
• 1 pkg (8 oz) Butler Soy Curls™

Seasoning Broth
• 3 cups water
• 3 T tamari, soy sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos™*
• 2 T fresh lemon juice
• 1 T raw apple cider vinegar
• 4 tsp onion powder
• 2 tsp garlic powder
• 2 tsp mushroom powder (porcini or portabella)
• 2 tsp browning liquid (e.g., Gravy Master™; for color)
• 1 tsp ground cumin
• ½ tsp dried thyme leaves
• ¼ tsp ground cardamom
• ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
• ¼ tsp ground black pepper
• pinch ground cloves
• pinch ground cinnamon
• pinch cayenne or ground red pepper

Additional Ingredients for Pan-Browning
• 2 T olive oil
• sea salt or kosher salt as desired
• additional coarse ground pepper as desired

Tahini Sauce Ingredients
• ½ cup sesame tahini
• 6 T water, or more as needed to thin consistency
• 2 T fresh lemon juice
• 1 clove raw garlic
• ¼ tsp fine sea salt or kosher salt, or more to taste
• chopped fresh parsley for garnish

Preparation
In a large saucepan, whisk together the seasoning broth ingredients and bring to a boil. Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the dry soy curls. Fold well in the broth and cover the saucepan. Allow to cool for 30 minutes to allow proper absorption of the seasoning and the color. Fold occasionally to ensure that all pieces are rehydrated and seasoned. The strips can be refrigerated in the broth for up to 5 days before finishing.

Browning the Strips
Drain the excess liquid and discard. Add the olive oil to a large skillet and place over medium heat. Add the seasoned shawarma strips and sauté, turning frequently until most of the liquid has evaporated and the strips are nicely browned (the strips hold a great deal of flavored broth even after draining the excess, so browning may take a bit longer than other meat analogues). Taste and add salt and additional ground black pepper as desired.

Wrap the shawarma strips in flatbread with additional ingredients of your choice, as mentioned in the recipe description (for the photo, I used a skillet cooked mixture of potatoes, onions and halved grape tomatoes), and top with a generous drizzle of tahini sauce and a garnish of chopped parsley.

For the tahini sauce, process the ingredients, except for the parsley, in a blender until smooth. Chill until ready to use. If necessary after chilling, thin with a little water to achieve a saucy consistency. Drizzle over the shawarma and vegetable toppings and garnish with the chopped parsley.


Spread the veggie love
Print Recipe
Levantine Shawarma, Vegan-Style with Tahini Sauce
Votes: 2
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Servings
Votes: 2
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Share this Recipe

Corned Brisket Strips featuring Butler’s Soy Curls™

Spread the veggie love


Corned brisket strips are made with Butler Soy Curls™. When seasoned and prepared properly, this unique product and recipe yields a texture and flavor that is reminiscent of seasoned corned beef brisket (left unseasoned, the strips have an inherent natural sweetness; proper seasoning helps mask this sweetness). Butler Soy Curls™ have a texture similar to textured soy/vegetable protein chunks but they are fundamentally different because they are made with non-GMO whole soybeans, as opposed to textured soy/vegetable protein, which is the extruded by-product of soybean oil production. As such, they are processed differently.

For gluten-free diets, replace the white shoyu with wheat-free tamari in the seasoning brine.

If you cannot obtain the soy curls, textured vegetable/soy protein nuggets can be used (but you will have seasoned corned brisket bites rather than strips).

This recipe yields about 1 and ½ lbs.

Primary Ingredient
• 1 pkg (8 oz) Butler Soy Curls™ (or 8 oz textured vegetable/soy protein nuggets)

Seasoning Brine
• 3 cups water
• ¼ cup white shoyu (white soy sauce)*
• 4 tsp onion powder
• 2 tsp garlic powder
• 2 tsp nutritional yeast flakes
• 1 tsp coriander seeds
• ½ tsp ground ginger
• ½ tsp dry ground mustard
• 1 bay leaf
• 10 whole cloves
• 10 whole black peppercorns
• 5 whole allspice berries
• 5 juniper berries, lightly crushed
• 1 T beet powder

*If you cannot obtain white shoyu, substitute with tamari, soy sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos™, however the finished product will be darker.

Additional Ingredients for Sautéing
• 2 T olive oil
• sea salt or kosher salt as desired
• coarse ground pepper as desired

Preparation
In a large saucepan, whisk together the seasoning brine ingredients (except for the beet powder), add the bay leaf and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook 20 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat, add the beet powder and stir until dissolved. Strain the mixture through a fine mesh sieve into a large bowl; discard the spices.

Add the dry soy curls. Fold well in the brine and cover with plastic wrap. Allow to cool for 30 minutes to allow proper absorption of the seasoning and the color. Fold occasionally to ensure that all pieces are rehydrated and seasoned.

Drain and discard the excess seasoning brine. Add the olive oil to a large skillet and place over medium-low heat. Add the seasoned strips and sauté, turning frequently until most of the liquid has evaporated. Browning the strips is not necessary. Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.


Spread the veggie love
Print Recipe
Corned Brisket Strips featuring Butler’s Soy Curls™
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Servings
Votes: 0
Rating: 0
You:
Rate this recipe!
Share this Recipe

Soy Porq Strips featuring Butler Soy Curls™

Spread the veggie love

Vegan Cuban Porq featuring Butler Soy Curls™

Soy porq strips are made with Butler Soy Curls™. When seasoned and prepared properly, this unique product yields an amazing roast pork-like texture and flavor (left unseasoned they have an inherent natural sweetness; proper seasoning helps mask this sweetness). Butler Soy Curls™ have a texture similar to textured soy/vegetable protein chunks but they are fundamentally different because they are made with non-GMO whole soybeans, as opposed to textured soy/vegetable protein, which is the extruded by-product of soybean oil production. As such, they are processed differently.

For gluten-free diets, replace the white shoyu with 2 tablespoons wheat-free tamari in the seasoning broth and add salt to taste.

If you cannot obtain the soy curls, textured vegetable/soy protein nuggets can be used (but you will have seasoned porq bites rather than porq strips). This recipe yields about 1 and ½ lbs.

Primary Ingredient
• 1 pkg (8 oz) Butler Soy Curls™ (or 8 oz textured vegetable/soy protein nuggets)

Seasoning Broth
• 3 cups water
• ¼ cup white shoyu (white soy sauce)*
• 4 tsp onion powder
• 2 tsp garlic powder
• 2 tsp nutritional yeast flakes
• 2 tsp mushroom powder (porcini or portabella)
• a few grinds of fresh ground black pepper
• 1 bay leaf

*If you cannot obtain white shoyu, substitute with 2 tablespoons tamari, soy sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos™* and add salt to taste.

Additional Ingredients for Sautéing
• 2 T olive oil
• sea salt or kosher salt as desired
• additional coarse ground pepper as desired
• additional herbs and spices of your choice

Preparation
In a large saucepan, whisk together the seasoning broth ingredients, add the bay leaf and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan, reduce the heat to a simmer and cook 10 minutes. Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the dry soy curls. Fold well in the broth and cover the saucepan. Allow to cool for 30 minutes to allow proper absorption of the seasoning and the color. Fold occasionally to ensure that all pieces are rehydrated and seasoned.

Drain the excess liquid (about ½ cup) and reserve if desired for enhancing vegetable broths or for seasoning other foods.

Add the olive oil to a large skillet and place over medium heat. Add the seasoned porq strips and any additional herbs and spices as desired (a splash of white wine is always a nice touch too). Sauté, turning frequently until most of the liquid has evaporated and the strips are nicely browned (the strips hold a great deal of flavored broth even after draining the excess, so browning may take a bit longer than other meat analogues). Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.

If you wish to toss the strips with sautéed onions or other vegetables, prepare them in a separate skillet and combine with the strips before serving.

Note: To shred the porq strips, tear the larger individual strips in half lengthwise with your fingers. While this takes a few extra minutes, it yields a better shredded texture than pulsing them in a food processor (which chops rather than shreds).

Cuban Porq Variation
Ingredients for finishing the prepared porq strips:
• ¼ cup fresh orange juice
• 2 T fresh lime juice
• 2 T cooking oil
• 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
• 9 cloves garlic, minced (3 T)
• 1 T fresh minced oregano or 1 tsp dried oregano
• 1 tsp fresh orange zest, loosely packed
• 1 tsp fresh lime zest loosely packed
• sea salt or kosher salt and coarse ground black pepper to taste

Finishing Technique
Combine the citrus juices in a small bowl; set aside.
Add the oil to a large non-stick skillet or wok and place over medium heat; sauté the onion until tender and translucent. Add the garlic, oregano, orange zest and lime zest and sauté 30 seconds.

Add the porq strips and sauté, tossing frequently, until lightly browned. Drizzle in the citrus juices and toss well to distribute. Continue to sauté until almost all the liquid has evaporated and the strips are beginning to brown in spots (this will take several minutes); season with salt and pepper to taste. Transfer to a serving platter. Garnish with lime wedges.


Spread the veggie love
Print Recipe
Soy Porq Strips featuring Butler Soy Curls™
Votes: 2
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Course Main Dish
Servings
Course Main Dish
Servings
Votes: 2
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Share this Recipe

Soy Steak Strips

Spread the veggie love


Soy steak strips are prepared using Butler Soy Curls™. When seasoned and prepared properly, this unique product yields an amazing steak-like meat analogue (left unseasoned they have an inherent natural sweetness; proper seasoning helps mask this sweetness). Butler Soy Curls™ have a texture similar to textured soy/vegetable protein chunks but they are fundamentally different because they are made with non-GMO whole soybeans, as opposed to textured soy/vegetable protein, which is the extruded by-product of soybean oil production. As such, they are processed differently and use no solvents in the production process.

For gluten-free diets, use wheat-free tamari in the seasoning broth. Omit the vegan Worcestershire if commercial varieties are not gluten-free; or prepare the Worcestershire sauce found in my cookbooks using wheat-free tamari.

This recipe yields about 1 and ½ lbs.

Primary Ingredient
• 1 pkg (8 oz) Butler Soy Curls™

Seasoning Broth
• 3 cups water
• 3 T tamari, soy sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos™*
• 4 tsp onion powder
• 2 tsp garlic powder
• 2 tsp nutritional yeast flakes
• 2 tsp mushroom powder (porcini or portabella)
• 2 tsp browning liquid (e.g., Gravy Master™; for color)
• 1 tsp vegan Worcestershire sauce
• ½ tsp paprika
• a few grinds of fresh ground black pepper

*Reduce the tamari to 2 tablespoons if you intend to serve the strips in a sauce, such as BBQ or teriyaki; or use reduced-sodium tamari or soy sauce.

Tex-Mex Variation
Omit the paprika and add the following ingredients to the seasoning broth:
• 2 tsp ancho chili powder (mild chili powder)
• 1 tsp ground cumin
• optional for spicy: chipotle chili powder to taste

Additional Ingredients for Sautéing
• 2 T olive oil
• sea salt or kosher salt as desired
• additional coarse ground pepper as desired
• additional herbs and spices of your choice

Preparation
In a large saucepan, whisk together the seasoning broth ingredients and bring to a boil. Remove the saucepan from the heat and add the dry soy curls. Fold well in the broth and cover the saucepan. Allow to cool for 30 minutes to allow proper absorption of the seasoning and the color. Fold occasionally to ensure that all pieces are rehydrated and seasoned.

Drain the excess liquid (about ½ cup) and reserve if desired for enhancing vegetable broths or for seasoning other foods.

Add the olive oil to a large skillet and place over medium heat. Add the seasoned steak strips and any additional herbs and spices as desired (a splash of red wine is always a nice touch too). Sauté, turning frequently until most of the liquid has evaporated and the strips are nicely browned(the steak strips hold a great deal of flavored broth even after draining the excess, so browning may take a bit longer than other meat analogues). Taste and add salt and pepper as desired.

If you wish to toss the strips with sautéed onions or other vegetables, prepare them in a separate skillet and combine with the steak strips before serving.

Note: To shred the steak strips, pulse a few times in a food processor fitted with a standard chopping blade. Process in two batches so as not to overcrowd the processor bowl.


Spread the veggie love
Print Recipe
Soy Steak Strips
Votes: 13
Rating: 4.38
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Servings
Votes: 13
Rating: 4.38
You:
Rate this recipe!
Share this Recipe

Chef’s Premium Vegan Bacun

Spread the veggie love

Bacon has a flavor and texture that many people miss when they transition to a plant-based diet. Over the years I have published several bacun recipes but I feel this recipe excels above the rest. It is prepared with a blend of wheat protein from gluten, soy protein from tofu and my own special blend of seasonings. This yields a finished product that is remarkably similar to real bacon in flavor, appearance and texture with a nice balance of salty, smoky and sweet. There are several steps to this recipe; however, don’t be intimated because it’s relatively easy to prepare when following the step-by-step directions and the results are well worth the effort.

 


Spread the veggie love
Print Recipe
Chef's Premium Vegan Bacun
For this recipe, two batches of dough will be mixed to create the bacun. Dough 1 is for the light marble layer and Dough 2 is for the dark marble layer. You will need a blender for processing the liquid ingredients and either a food processor with a dough blade or a stand mixer with a paddle attachment for kneading the dough (manual kneading will not be sufficient for developing the gluten strands in the dough). This recipe yields a large slab of bacun, about 1 and ½ lbs.
Votes: 7
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
lb
Ingredients
Dry Ingredients for Dough 1
Blender Ingredients for Dough 1
Dry Ingredients for Dough 2
Optional Rub Ingredients
Required Equipment
Servings
lb
Ingredients
Dry Ingredients for Dough 1
Blender Ingredients for Dough 1
Dry Ingredients for Dough 2
Optional Rub Ingredients
Required Equipment
Votes: 7
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Instructions
Warning!
  1. It is very important to use only heavy-duty aluminum foil for this recipe. Regular foil is not sturdy enough and can easily rupture from steam pressure which builds up inside the sealed package.
Mise en Place
  1. Press the tofu until it is not releasing any more water and then wrap the tofu in paper towels or a lint-free kitchen towel and squeeze as dry as possible. Removing as much moisture as possible is essential to this recipe. The tofu should be crumbly and barely moist. Weigh the recommended amounts after pressing and squeezing dry and set aside. Gather, measure and set aside the remaining ingredients.
Preparing Dough 1
  1. Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°F.
  2. Combine the dry ingredients for Dough 1 in a small mixing bowl.
  3. Crumble the tofu into a blender and add the remaining blender ingredients for Dough 1. Begin processing on low speed and gradually increase to high (this will discourage an airlock from forming). Process until completely liquefied, stopping to scrape down the sides of the blender as necessary. The mixture will be very thick and creamy.
  4. Scoop the blender ingredients into the dry ingredients for Dough 1 and mix well until a soft dough forms. Transfer the dough to a food processor or stand mixer and process on high speed for 2 full minutes to develop the gluten. The properly kneaded dough will be soft and sticky but should exhibit some elasticity (stretch). Do not add more gluten to firm up the dough. Divide the dough into 2 pieces and set aside.
  5. Rinse the blender jar and set aside for the next step.
Preparing Dough 2
  1. Combine the dry ingredients for Dough 2 in a large mixing bowl.
  2. Crumble the tofu into the blender and add the remaining blender ingredients for Dough 2. Process until completely liquefied, stopping to scrape down the sides of the blender as necessary.
  3. Scoop the blender ingredients into the dry ingredients for Dough 2 and mix well until a soft dough forms. Transfer the dough to the food processor or stand mixer and process on high speed for 2 full minutes to develop the gluten. The properly kneaded dough will be soft and sticky but should exhibit some elasticity (stretch). Do not add more gluten to firm up the dough. Divide the dough into 3 pieces and set aside.
Layering, Wrapping and Baking the Dough
  1. Tear off a large sheet of foil (about 18-inches) and place on your work surface.
  2. Take a piece of Dough 2 and flatten into a disc. Place the flattened dough onto the foil. Next, repeat with a piece of Dough 1 and place on top of the first disc. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough, alternating as you stack.
  3. Firmly press down on the stack until it is about 1-inch thick. Now, use your fingers to press and shape the dough into a compact, square slab. Don’t worry about being too precise; the dough will expand during baking to conform to the shape of the foil package.
  4. If desired, season the surface of the dough with ½ teaspoon of the optional black pepper. Flip the slab over and repeat with the remaining pepper.
  5. Fold the slab of bacun over in the foil several times (don’t roll) to create a flat package. Fold in the sides of the foil, crimping to seal the foil as you fold but leave about 1-inch of air space on each side to allow for expansion of the dough as it bakes.
  6. Rewrap in a second sheet of foil in the same manner. Place the package directly on the middle oven rack and bake for 2 hours.
  7. Let the bacun cool in the foil until it reaches near room temperature. It’s helpful (but not essential) to place a heavy object, such as a cast iron skillet, on the foil package to compress it as it cools and keep the slab of bacun flat. Refrigerate the foil package for a minimum of 8 hours. Chilling will firm and enhance the texture and make slicing easier – this is important. The bacun can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week before slicing and finishing or in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  8. For the best finished texture, use an electric slicer or very sharp knife and slice the bacun as thinly as possible. Of course, if you prefer a thicker cut, that’s entirely up to you. The bacun will have a soft, moist texture which is quite reminiscent of raw bacon. When sliced thin, the bacun may tatter a bit but this only adds to the authentic finished texture and appearance when fried.
Finishing the Bacun
  1. Finishing the bacun in the oven is my preferred method since heating is controlled. To do this, preheat the oven to 375°F/190°C. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil or parchment paper and lay the slices in a single layer on top. Generously mist or brush the slices on both sides with cooking oil. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes.
  2. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to blot any excess oil. As the bacun cools it will crisp up a bit while still retaining a nice chewy texture. Serve warm; chop, dice or crumble in recipes; or layer on your favorite sandwich.
  3. Optionally, the bacun slices can be fried in a skillet with a generous layer of cooking oil over medium heat. Avoid frying at a high temperature to prevent burning. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to blot any excess oil. Serve warm; chop, dice or crumble in recipes; or layer on your favorite sandwich.
Recipe Notes

Share this Recipe

Sweet and Smoky Tofu Bacun

Spread the veggie love

DSC00988-003Tofu bacun is so easy to prepare and yields excellent results. It just requires a little time for pressing the tofu (8 to 12 hours), marinating the tofu with the seasoning liquid (a minimum of 12 hours), and low-oven baking or drying in a food dehydrator (about 2 hours). For this recipe I recommend using a tofu press, such as the TofuXpress®, that will hold the shape of the tofu while compressing the texture and removing the water prior to marinating. This recipe yields about 8 oz./½ lb. of bacun.

Ingredients
• 1 block (about 14 oz before pressing) extra-firm tofu
• high-temp cooking oil for frying

Marinade Ingredients
• ⅔ cup water
• ⅓ cup tamari, soy sauce or Bragg Liquid Aminos™
• ¼ cup dark brown sugar or real maple syrup
• 1 T vegan Worcestershire Sauce
• 1 T liquid hickory smoke

Preparation
Press the tofu to remove as much water as possible. Blot the surface dry and then cut ⅛-inch thick slices lengthwise.

Combine the marinade ingredients and stir until the sugar dissolves. If you prefer a less salty bacun, opt for low-sodium tamari or soy sauce. Pour a small amount of the marinade into a small food storage container and begin layering the tofu strips into the container, overlapping the slices as you layer. Handle the slices carefully as they will be rather delicate.

DSC00974-001

Pour the remaining marinade over the slices and seal the container. There should be sufficient marinade to just about cover the slices completely. Seal the container and refrigerate for a minimum of 12 hours and up to 48 hours, with 24 hours being ideal.

Preheat the oven to 225°F/110°C. Place a non-stick baker’s cooling rack on a baking sheet. If you don’t have a cooling rack, line the baking sheet with parchment paper.

DSC00976

Place the slices in a single layer on the rack. Again, handle the slices carefully as they will be rather delicate. Place the sheet on the middle oven rack and low-bake for 2 hours.

Alternately, a food dehydrator can be used at the highest setting. Dry for 2 hours or until the slices are dry to the touch but not completely dehydrated.

Place the slices in a food storage container and refrigerate until ready to finish and serve.

Finishing the Bacun
Tofu bacun benefits from frying in oil to create the crispy texture. Pour enough high-temp cooking into a skillet to cover the bottom completely and place over medium-high heat. Add the strips to the skillet without overcrowding and fry until nicely browned, turning occasionally. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain. Try laying the bacun on the towel with an undulation to mimic a cooked bacon appearance. If desired, season with some coarse ground black pepper while still hot. The bacun will crisp further as it cools and will hold the undulated shape.

Serve immediately or store in a sealed container in the refrigerator until ready to use in recipes. Pre-fried bacun can be reheated in a low oven.


Spread the veggie love
Print Recipe
Sweet and Smoky Tofu Bacun
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Servings
Servings
Votes: 1
Rating: 5
You:
Rate this recipe!
Share this Recipe
Page 1 of 212