Saturday, May 31, 2014

Easy Sunflower Seed and Chive Sandwich Spread

There is a little European grocery store I visit once a month. I go there to purchase European goodies I am unable to get anywhere else. They have the best pickles in brine and other accidentally vegan foods I ate when growing up in Poland.

One day I stumbled upon a vegan pate made out of semolina flour which was excellent. However when I went back to purchase it again, it was no longer available. I wanted to eat it again obviously, so I decided to try making it myself. Instead of semolina flour, I used a more accessible and a very affordable ingredient such as the sunflower seeds.

This sandwich spread is surprisingly easy to make. I think the most difficult part about it is toasting the seeds. They will burn and play when you walk away from the pan. See what I did there? You can use other spices and herbs or finely diced vegetables. The possibilities are infinite.


Sunflower Seed and Chive Sandwich Spread
1 and 1/2 cups raw sunflower seeds
2 teaspoons onion powder
1/2 teaspoon granulated garlic
1 teaspoon smoked paprika (optional)
1/2 teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper to taste (about 1/4 teaspoon)
1/2 cup water, room temperature
1/3 cup chives, finely chopped
You can have a vegan breakfast anywhere in the world using this easy sandwich spread recipe. 
Preheat a large non-stick cooking pan over a medium heat and add all of the sunflower seeds. Given that the sunflower seeds already contain natural oils, there is no need for adding additional fat such as oil or non-stick cooking spray. Spread them evenly on the pan and toast for about 4-5 minutes until light golden color. Stir once in a while.

Be careful not to burn them as you will have to start over. It happened to me, and I was not pleased. Once the seeds are toasted, place them on a plate and allow to completely cool off before making the spread.

Place the cooled sunflower seeds in a high speed blender or a food processor and pulse until they become a powder. To make sure there are no whole seeds bumbling about, do this in batches if necessary. Now place the sunflower seed powder in a bowl, and add all the spices. I used a whisk to incorporate the spices with the sunflower seed powder.

Add water and mix well. It will take a minute for the spread to fully thicken. Mix in chives and taste for additional seasonings. You may want to add more salt or pepper or both.

Serve on bread or crackers. Store in the refrigerator in a tightly closed container for 3 to 4 days.

*Note: This spread has a potential for many variations. Use favorite spices and herbs instead of what is suggested. 


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