Vegetarian Entree for Thanksgiving: Walnut Chickpea Sage Patties and Mushroom Gravy (Recipe)

Thanksgiving is the one day of the year set aside to give thanks for the many blessings in our lives -- and share an overly-indulgent, epic meal.

Except for poor vegetarians -- most years, they've gotta endure a house all smelled up like turkey, and are left to nibble on a few sides: green beans and sweet potatoes. It just doesn't seem fair.

In an effort to satiate everyone's appetite, we've enlisted the help of Chef Amber Antonelli of the Naked Bite. Here, the conscious culinary expert gives us an entrée-worthy recipe that will wow even the meat-and-potato men in the family.

Walnut Chickpea Sage Patties

Makes about 10 balls

6 Tablespoons coconut oil or olive oil, divided

1 medium yellow onion, medium dice

4 large garlic cloves, chopped

1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in filtered water, drained

1 cup chopped walnuts, toasted

1 packed cup Italian parsley leaves

10 large leaves fresh sage

1 medium sprig rosemary, picked from the stem

1 teaspoon curry powder

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons tamari or nama shoyu soy sauce

1/2 teaspoon salt
fresh cracked pepper to taste

2 large farm eggs

Heat a large sauté pan on medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil, the onion and the garlic. Sauté for 5-6 minutes until translucent and beginning to brown slightly.

While the onions are cooking; add the chickpeas (soaked but still raw) and remaining ingredients up to the eggs to a food processor. Pulse a few times until slightly broken down. Then add the cooked onions and garlic and process the whole mixture until well combined and broken down, scraping the sides of the processor a few times in between.

Transfer to the mixing bowl, add the egg and mix well. Taste to adjust seasoning if necessary. Heat a large sauté pan on medium heat and add a few of the remaining tablespoons of oil. Using your hands- form the mixture into small 1 x 2 inch patties and sear about 3 minutes on each side until nice and brown. Serve immediately with the Veggie Gravy, recipe follows.

Veggie Mushroom Gravy

12 large shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and thinly sliced

3 Tablespoons olive oil or butter

2 large cloves garlic, finely chopped

2 cups vegetable stock

1/2 cup dry white or red wine

5 teaspoons cornstarch, non GMO preferred

3 Tablespoons mellow or sweet white miso paste*

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 teaspoon tamari or nama shoyu soy sauce**

Freshly cracked pepper to taste

2 stems fresh thyme, removed from stem and chopped

Heat a medium sauce pan on medium-high heat. Add the sliced mushrooms and butter or oil. Sauté for 3-4 minutes until beginning to sear and then add the garlic. Cook- stirring a few times- until the garlic starts to brown and the mushrooms begin to stick to the bottom of the pan. Add the stock, and wine and boil for 2-3 minutes.

Mix the cornstarch with 2 tablespoons of water or more veggie stock and add to the pot. Bring back to a boil, the liquid should begin to thicken. When the mixture is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, stir in the miso, tamari, mustard, pepper and the thyme. Whisk well to combine and be sure that all of the miso is dissolved. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary and serve!

Tips and Notes:

  • Miso is a fermented soybean paste that is available in the refrigerated section of many grocery stores. It is a probiotic form of soy and has many healing properties. And it's delicious!
  • Tamari and nama shoyu are similar to soy sauce but with less or no wheat and are higher in enzymes. You can also use soy sauce.

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Regina Arriola
Contact: Regina Arriola

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