This is vegan comfort food at its best! Hearty, filling, simple to make, and - for those who are interested - entirely gluten free. It was so delicious that once it was cooked, I found I couldn't stop eating it. I managed to get through a full half of the frying pan for my dinner last night! That certainly hadn't been intended, as I was full after a quarter. Then this morning, I ate the rest with baked beans for my breakfast. Yummy. But smothering it in sweet chilli sauce is a must, I find.
I've been on a mission to use my cupboard and freezer stock to reduce food waste, and focusing on buying fresh produce that is on offer since my budget is restricted. This means I have been a little more creative with food over the last few days. I don't often buy leeks, but I got these ones on a special deal in Aldi and came up with this recipe. It's a take on my popular mushroom vegan omelette, using gram flour (chickpea flour) as the base and binder.
What I love about this frittata is how delicious it is eaten both hot and cold, and because it sets well after cooking, it's great to take away from home as a packed lunch or on a picnic. It would very much make a good buffet table choice or be great for tapas. It also keeps well in the fridge for a couple of days at least after making.
Be aware that you'll need to place the pan under a grill (broiler) to cook the top part of the frittata, so use a frying pan with an all-metal handle, or a removable one. I once made the mistake of using a pan with a plastic coated handle when I cooked something under the grill like this, and melted it!
Don't worry if you don't have black salt (Kala Namak), just use normal salt - although bear in mind it is this that gives a slightly eggy flavour, from the sulphuric taste to it. Serve with salad or vegetables or tomatoes.
Leek & Potato Vegan Frittata
Serves 2 extremely hungry people or 4 less hungry people.
1 leek, washed and sliced
1 potato, baked in skin and roughly chopped (or boiled and diced)
1 onion, finely chopped
1 stick celery, sliced (use the leafy ends)
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
1 cup chick pea flour (gram flour)
½ cup nutritional yeast flakes
½ cup unsweetened non dairy milk eg. Soya
½ cup cold water
1 teaspoon cumin powder
½-¾ teaspoon black salt (Kala Namak)
½ teaspoon turmeric
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pimenton picante (or hot paprika)
Freshly ground black pepper
Oil for frying
1. In a mixing bowl, mix the gram flour, spices and seasonings together.
2. Heat some oil in a large non-stick frying pan and sauté the onion, celery and leek for about ten minutes on a medium heat until cooked and softened. Add the garlic and potato and sauté for another five minutes or so.
3. Add the soya milk and cold water to the gram flour mixture and whisk together so well combined and not lumpy. Pour the mixture evenly over the leeks and onions in the pan, tilting the pan so it is spread around. Now turn on and preheat the grill (that's the broiler, if in the US) while the fritatta mixture cooks on a medium heat for about 15 minutes.
4. When you can tell the base of the frittata is set and it is browning at the sides (but not burning underneath!), place the frying pan under the grill. You will need to work out with your own equipment the best way of doing this, and probably remove the grill pan, but better to use a gfrying pan without a plastic handle! The frittata needs to cook now until the top is fully set and slightly browned. Cook slowly at first and see how it goes.
5. When the frittata appears fully set and browned (about 10-15 minutes), remove the frying pan from under the grill and leave to cool for about 5 minutes before slicing and serving. This is really delicious served with a spicy sweet chilli sauce, and is also great cold.