janet @ the taste space

Peacefood Cafe’s Chickpea Fries & HappyCow Cookbook Giveaway

In Appetizers, Book Review, Sides on October 21, 2014 at 7:10 AM

Peacefood Cafe Chickpea Fries Recipe

I may not have promoted it here but I am a complete fan of Happy Cow. When travelling, I consult the reviews (and then leave my own) to find the best vegan eats around the world. Not only across Canada and the US, I chronicled my eats while travelling in Germany, Iceland, Mexico, Colombia and South Africa. Rightfully so, there are zero entries for Madagascar.

In any case, I was thrilled when I heard that Eric Brent and Glen Merzer were creating a cookbook featuring recipes from top-rated vegan restaurants, The Happy Cow Cookbook.

Peacefood Cafe Chickpea Fries Recipe

The neat part of this compilation was each restaurant’s profile, highlighting their popular and favourite dishes, important lessons as a restaurant owner/chef, and the future of plant-based food movement. Each restaurant shares one, two or more recipes, along with some photographs. As expected with a compilation, the recipes vary with respect to level of difficulty, recipe instructions and photographs. On the whole, the recipes seem solid. Millenium’s Pistachio-Crusted Eggplant Napoleon is way too complex for me to recreate, but makes me want to visit this San Francisco eatery.  There is also a recipe for Coconut Tofu and Blackened Tempeh with Grapefruit Yuzu (courtesy of Green in Tempe, AZ) that definitely beyond my reach. However, Lettuce Love Cafe’s Tempeh Reuben looks easy to recreate at home, as well as Netherlands’ Veggies on Fire’s Lemon Cheesecake with Raspberry Sauce.

The book is ordered alphabetically, based on the name of the restaurants, which makes it difficult to find recipes. However, the breadth of recipes seems vast with little repeats (although you will certainly find many recipes for vegan cheese!). Recipes vary from Kimchi Nori Maki Rolls and Peruvian Leftovers Pie to Avocado Apple Tartare with Walnut Bonbons to Chicken Fried Tempeh and Carrot Cake with a Vegan Cream Cheese frosting. Sadly, what I was most disappointed, was the abundant use of vegan substitutes (ie vegan cream cheese, sour cream and Vegenaise), although that probably helps prep time for restaurants.

While I have never been to Peacefood Cafe, I was itching to make their “Award-Winning Chickpea Fries” which is basically an Indian-spiced baked fry made with chickpea flour. They were quite easy to make although I regret adding the bay leaf to the spice mixture. It became a predominant flavour and bothersome since I didn’t grind it to a fine powder. I didn’t make the Caesar Dipping Sauce as the recipe perplexed me. I was not sure why there was fermented bean curd in the sauce without directions to pulverize it with a blender. In any case, the recipe below is as seen in the book. Enjoy.

Peacefood Cafe Chickpea Fries Recipe

Thankfully, the publisher allowed me to share the recipe AND giveaway the cookbook to a reader living in the United States or Canada. To be entered in the random draw for the cookbook, please leave a comment below telling me what your favourite vegan-friendly restaurant is (and where). Bonus entry if you share your link to your review on HappyCow. The winner will be selected at random on November 7, 2014. Good luck!

PS. HappyCow Cookbook recipes spotted elsewhere:

Beet Salad with Shallot-Thyme Dressing (from Blackbird Pizzeria in Philadelphia, PA)
Cherry Royal (from Veggie Grill in Hollywood, CA)
Granada Chai
(from El Piano in Malaga, Spain)
Kimchi Nori Maki Roll (from Real Food Daily in West Hollywood, CA)
Moroccan Tajine (from SunCafe Organic in Studio City, CA)
Nutloaf (from Wayward Cafe in Seattle, WA)
Pasta with Pumpkin Curry Sauce (from Counter Culture in Austin, TX)
Pickled Beets (from Zen Kitchen in Ottawa, ON)
Pistachio-Crusted Eggplant Napoleon (from Millennium Restaurant in San Francisco, CA)
Pumpkin Cheesecake with Bourbon-Brown Sugar Cream (from True Bistro in Boston, MA)
Quinoa Tabbouleh
(from Chaco Canyon in Seattle, WA)
Raw Lime Parfait (from Plant in Asheville, NC)
Roasted Spaghetti Squash, Cauliflower, Garlic and Mashed Potatoes with Porcini Mushroom Gravy (from Peacefood Cafe in New York, NY)
Skillet Cornbread (from Cornbread Cafe in Eugene, OR)
Spicy Cha Cha (from The Loving Hut in Houston, TX)
Swiss Bircher Muesli (from Luna’s Living Kitchen in Charlotte, NC)

Other recipes from restaurants I have made:

Candle Cafe’s Paradise Casserole with Black Beans, Millet and Cinnamon-Miso Sweet Potato Mash
Fresh’s All-Star Salad
Fresh’s Miso Gravy
Gorilla Food’s Strawberry Bliss Up Shake
Live Organic Cafe’s Raw Pad Thai
Peacefood Cafe’s Raw Key Lime Pie

I am sharing this with the Virtual Vegan Linky Potluck.

Award-Winning Chickpea Fries
Reprinted, with permission, from The Happy Cow Cookbook

5 cups water
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast powder
1 tablespoon dried fenugreek leaves
1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
4 tablespoons olive oil
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger
4 tablespoons blended spices*
1.5 cups chickpea flour
Salt and pepper, to taste

*To make the spice blend, mix together a pinch of each: ground coriander, turmeric, cumin, chili, fenugreek seeds, nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamom seeds, bay leaf, fennel, and onion flakes, or use a commercial Indian spice pack. Janet’s note: I would omit the bay leaf next time!

1. Combine water, nutritional yeast, dried fenugreek leaves, and shredded unsweetened coconut. Stir and mix well, and set aside in a bowl. In a heavy pot, pour in olive oil and add minced garlic and ginger; saute over medium heat for 3 minutes. Add blended spices and saute for another minute, and add mixture in the bowl. Then add flour. Stir constantly to keep mixture from sticking on the bottom of the pot. Stir about 20 minutes until the thickness of the mixture resembles cookie dough. Remove from heat and add salt and pepper to taste.

2. Transfer mixture to an oiled cookie sheet, spread evenly, and let it cool in refrigerator overnight. To serve, cut mixture into 3 x ¼ rectangles, then deep-fry them in preheated oil or bake them in an oven at 350 degrees for 20 to 35 minutes until they are golden brown. Serve immediately with our Caesar Dipping Sauce (see recipe below).

Caesar Dipping Sauce

2 tablespoons tofu sour cream
4 tablespoons Vegenaise
1/2 piece fermented bean curd*
1/2 tablespoon nutritional yeast powder
1 teaspoon lemon juice
Salt and pepper, to taste

1. Mix all the ingredients in a bowl. Refrigerate 2 hours before serving.

*Available at Asian markets

  1. Hi – the cookbook looks like fun! So…my favorite vegan friendly restaurant in Calgary, Allberta is The Coup! Yummy dishes and great ambiance of like-minded people…very tempting each and everyday because it’s only a few blocks from my house!

  2. What a neat cookbook! I love Happy Cow. And anything chickpea. 🙂

  3. Looks like a really nice cookbook. There is a small, family-owned Indian restaurant near me that will make lots of vegan dishes if you ask – many are already vegan.

  4. WOW! This is amazing! LOVE chickpeas! But this looks like a great comfort food, too! YUM! This is a great giveaway!!!! I’d love to win but I’m sure anyone else would, too! Awesome!

  5. Thanks for doing the giveaway! Out here in the boonies there’s no such thing as a vegan restaurant…best bet is to stop by the grocery for a bag of salad, can of organic beans and a LaraBar if I need a full meal in town.

  6. Hey Janet !!! Thanks again for another wonderful giveaway 🙂 Your fries looks delicious. Yumm !!! So far, my favorite vegan resto is in Québec City, Canada. The name of the resto is Zen and it is asiatic cuisine. There’s another one in Québec City that is vegan and focus on raw food, Ôm Prana 🙂

    • Thanks Jessica for the pics in Quebec City – I’ll be visiting soon:))

      • It’s my pleasure. There’s also Qui lu cru that is vegan and mostly raw 🙂 Have a nice trip. That’s a wonderful city.

  7. Woo hoo! Vegetarian Haven is in there too!

  8. Thanks for offering the giveaway! I’m partial to Golden West Cafe here in Baltimore, and their BBQ “rib” sandwich. I’ve heard similar comments to yours about the organization of the book being a little strange and some of the recipes being a little hard to follow. I guess it’s not surprising since they had to get the recipes from restaurant owners, some of the busiest people I know… it sounds like there are still some great recipes in there and it would be fun to read about all of the different vegan restaurants that I have yet to try 🙂

  9. Veggie Galaxy in Boston is my absolute favorite. I may dream of it at night.

  10. We like The Good Karma Vegan House here in San Jose, CA

  11. That recipe looks great. There aren’t any vegan dedicated restaurants where I live. But there are some that have vegan options. My favorite is Jae Spice in Lenox,MA.

  12. We will be trying that recipe soon! Our favorite vegan restaurant is Cafe Blossom in NYC-had the BEST vegan ravioli there, and their alfredo is to die for.

  13. The Red Fern in Rochester, NY.

  14. New york bagel deli miami beach

    Raw food and smoothies

  15. Gotta get my hands on this cookbook and these fries!

  16. PS favorite vegan restaurant is Sage’s in Salt Lake City!

  17. I love Chipotle Mexican Grill

  18. My favorite is The Chicago Diner or Karyn’s on the Green both in Chicago

  19. This looks so yummy!! My favorite restaurant is Plant in Asheville. We were there just last weekend and I noticed that they had a copy of the Happy Cow cookbook on display, so I asked to look through it while we waited for our food. I would absolutely love to have my own copy of it!! Thanks for the giveaway!!

  20. My favorite vegan restaurant is Kao’s in Malmö (Sweden)!

  21. My favourite vegan friendly restauarant is (more than one!) when I went to Halifax I ate so well at The Wooden Monkey, Wildleek and Heartwood Cafe. I wish my bigger city (Hamilton would get on board).

    Fingers crossed. Thanks

  22. I love happy cow! I use it all of the time and it has helped me find some awesome eats while traveling (and even while I’m close to home!). Oh wow – I’m so glad they let you share the chickpea fries recipe! Yum =)

  23. My favorite is the Good Karma Artisan Ales & Café in San Jose, CA

  24. You can be sure I’m going to try this recipe. Just my sort of thing. There is a lovely little place called the Root Cellar in London, Ontario that is not strictly vegan, but they have plenty of fresh offerings to please those that follow a vegan diet.

  25. […] Cookbook recipes spotted elsewhere: Chickpea Fries (from Peacefood Café, NY) Beet Salad with Shallot-Thyme Dressing (from Blackbird Pizzeria in Philadelphia, PA) Cherry Royal […]

  26. My favourite vegan restaurant is Lettuce Love Cafe in Burlington, ON 🙂

  27. […] P.S. You can find the recipe for these chickpea fries and caesar sauce here! […]

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