Saturday, November 10, 2007

ARF / 5-A-Day: 'Cause Us Vegans Need Thanksgiving Too

Well, it's coming around to that time of year again for those in the USA. With Hallowe'en out of the way and Rememberance Day tomorrow, the next major holiday on the calendar is Thanksgiving. While this means "turkey day" for the majority of Americans, I've heard my share of jokes about the plight of people who do not eat meat, forced to resort to things like the lentil loaf of the 70's or the (more modern) Tofurkey Feast.

Contrary to the marketing boards of products like Tofurkey, vegetarians and vegans are not restricted to these "fake birds" (that to me, are kind of disturbing...) every holiday. Thank goodness there are several helpful sites around nowadays! I decided to tinker around a little bit and come up with a delicious, seasonal and festive meal option for anyone out there, not just us non-meat-eaters, as it is quite good for you!

This meal that I'm submitting to Sweetnick's ARF / 5-A-Day event features a few hit players on the nutritional scene: pumpkin, potatoes, oats and garbanzo beans (AKA chickpeas). Now aside from all of these being fibre powerhouses, pumpkin is a good source of folate, omega-3 fatty acids, thiamin, copper, vitamin B5, vitamin B6, niacin and copper, oats are an excellent source of manganese and a very good source of selenium, potatoes are a great source of vitamin B6, copper, potassium, and manganese, and garbanzo beans are an excellent source of molybdenum and manganese. They are also a very good source of folate and a good source of protein, copper, phosphorous and iron. (Thanks to WHFoods for the info!)

Deep Dish Potato and Pumpkin Pie
Serves 10
1 small sugar pumpkin
2 large russet potatoes
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup rolled oats
½ teaspoon salt
½ cup non-hydrogenated shortening
4 tablespoons ice water
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups chopped onion
6 cloves garlic
3 cups cooked garbanzo beans, drained
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1/8 teaspoon ground allspice
½ teaspoon salt
freshly ground black pepper

  1. Preheat the oven to 400F.
  2. Split the pumpkin in half, seed and place the pumpkin halves face down on a baking sheet.
  3. Split the potatoes lengthwise and place on the pan with the pumpkin.
  4. Bake the pumpkin and potatoes for 1 hour. Let cool.
  5. Spoon out the pumpkin flesh and put it into a large bowl.
  6. Cut the potato into ½” cubes.
To make the dough:
  1. In a food processor fitted with a steel blade, put the flour, oats and salt into the bowl.
  2. Add the shortening.
  3. Run the machine in spurts until the shortening is in pea-sized bits.
  4. Add 4 tablespoons ice water, and run the machine in spurts again just enough to bring the dough together.
  5. Turn the dough onto a work surface and knead it with your hands until the dough is soft and smooth.
  6. Preheat the oven to 375F.
  7. On a floured surface, roll out the dough, and use it to line the bottom and sides of a large deep dish pie pan. Pierce the dough all over with a fork.
  8. Bake the crust for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven.
  9. Reduce the heat to 350F.
Assembly:
  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Add the onions, and cook them about 5 minutes. Add the garlic, and cook for 2 minutes more, stirring frequently.
  3. Remove the skillet from the heat.
  4. Stir in the pumpkin, potato, beans, thyme, allspice, salt, and pepper.
  5. Spoon into pre-baked pie shell.
  6. Bake 30 minutes