Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Polish Sandwich Spread - Paprykarz # Vegan MoFo

Back in my junior high school days, in Poland, I used to bring a sandwich with Paprykarz (fish paste with rice, tomato paste, oil and spices) to school frequently. Although my mom thought the idea of polluting the air for other students with fish breath was rude, I demanded to have this sandwich available to me at all times. Needless to say, my demands have changed. I want it VEGAN!

Paprykasz is a staple to students of all ages. When all else fails - example: lack of money due to a desperate need to purchase toilet paper instead of food - you could always buy a can of this paste. It is the Ramen alternative if you will. Paprykarz is a student's best friend. Now it is an animal's best friend too. 


Paprikarz sandwich with sliced avocado. 
1 tablespoon grapeseed oil (or oil of choice), plus additional if desired
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 small red bell pepper, seeds removed and finely chopped
2 small carrots, peeled and shredded
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup cooked brown or white rice (I used brown rice)
1 cup cooked chickpeas, drained, rinsed and mashed
1 (6-oz can) tomato paste (about 5 tablespoons)
Salt to taste
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1/8 teaspoon or to taste red pepper flakes (optional)
1-2 tablespoons kelp granules (optional)
2 teaspoons smoked paprika (regular paprika may be substituted)

Great for breakfast, lunch, dinner or as a snack. 

Cook the rice first in water or vegetable broth. While the rice is cooking, sauté the onion, bell pepper, and carrots in 1 tablespoon of oil, over a medium heat, for about 10 minutes. Add garlic and continue cooking for another 2 minutes. Add a splash of water if necessary to prevent from sticking to the pan.

Combine with tomato paste, salt, pepper, smoked paprika, and red pepper flakes. Cook for another minute or two. Turn off the heat, and transfer the vegetables to a medium bowl. Add mashed chickpeas (use food processor or a high-speed blender for a finer paste consistency), cooked rice, and kelp granules, if using. The kelp granules add a fishy like flavor to the dish. Use 1 tablespoon at at time as you might not need the entire amount. At this point, you can add another tablespoon of oil for flavor, but it is not necessary.

Serve on bread of choice or crackers.

Store in a closed jar, in the refrigerator, for up to a week. 

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