Yet another Artful Vegan dish this weekend, and this one was probably the easiest I’ve done. It was just a matter of making the pesto and the “gruyere” in advance then pretty much just layering and baking it! It does require rather an unusual ingredient – white fermented tofu. I got mine in a chinese supermarket. It’s pretty scary stuff – smelly and in a very gunky liquid but it definitely gave a nice musty taste to the cheese. I plan to use it again in this dish.
This is the second recipe from this book where I’ve found quite a big error. The title of the dish in the book is cashew gruyere, but there’s no cashews in it. I debated what to do about this for ages, and finally decided to add in a few cashews for added creaminess – but according to a few wise people at the PPK, the recipe is right, but the problem is that the title is wrong.
The pesto at first appeared extremely salty and I was a bit worried, but in the final dish it didn’t appear so. The other issue was the amount of potatoes used. I cant get hold of fancy red or purple potatoes, so I just used rooster, but maybe my potatoes were especially large as if I’d used the full 9 I’d never have got them all in the dish. I sliced 6 then did 3 experimental layers before I boiled them and that seemed about right, so I went with it.
This is a starter in the book, served with rocket salad and a drizzle of truffle oil. I served larger portions and some asparagus as it’s just come into season here and I always love that with truffle oil anyway so I thought the combination would work well. It did all work, extremely well, and resulted in a very classy meal with great depth of flavours. It was all rather rich though – and that’s coming from someone who used to be able to scarf down whole platefuls of the richest cheese dishes imaginable. Maybe my taste buds have changed? That’s probably the subject of another post, but in any case, this is a delightful, impressive dish which isn’t at all difficult. I’d love people to try it and see what they think!
I must confess that looks stunning.
Strange about the cashew, I can see why you thought about it for a while Liz.
Imagine how rich it would be with it in there.
potato torte sounds amazing!
I’ve eyed that torte recipe for ages! This really makes me want to pull at AV again. Impressive work!
Another way of using fermented tofu (as I find one recipe rarely uses a whole tin) is this sauce that goes with hot and spicy chinese stews (like huǒ guō):
You make it on the table in the bottom of your bowl before you put your portion of stew in. Decide your own quantities, but mine usually has copious amounts of:
fermented tofu (red if possible, very salty)
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