All posts by Lauren Toyota

Hot for Food's Lauren Toyota is quickly dispelling misconceptions about the vegan lifestyle by creating satisfying, plant-based versions of popular comfort foods. Her new cookbook, Vegan Comfort Classics: 101 Recipes To Feed Your Face, is now available.
Fresh rolls with green curry dipping sauce

Celebrate Spring With All-Green Fresh Rolls and Green Curry Dipping Sauce

I fell in love with the simplicity of fresh rolls since traveling to Bali. They’re on every menu and they all taste amazing! It might just be the tropical heat that makes them taste so good, but I ate my weight in them. It was on my agenda to master making them at home and I decided that filling them with lots of crunchy green stuff would be the game plan. I love that these are all green because, let’s face it, most of my best recipes are brown so it’s nice to change things up! Even if you can’t quite get the hang of rolling them on your first go, it all tastes the same in the end. And just wait until you get that creamy green curry dipping sauce in your mouth. It’s fantastic!

Fresh rolls with green curry dipping sauce

All-Green Fresh Rolls With Green Curry Dipping Sauce

Prep Time: 30 minutes
Cook Time: 20-25 minutes
Total Time: 50-55 minutes
Servings: 10 rolls

Ingredients:

½ cup canned coconut cream
1 ¾ cups tightly packed fresh cilantro, divided
2 Tbsp green curry paste
2 large garlic cloves
2 Tbsp lime juice (about 1 lime)
1 Tbsp seasoned rice vinegar
1 tsp granulated sugar
¼ tsp sea salt
Pinch chili flakes (optional)
10 dried rice paper sheets
5 large green leaf lettuce leaves (ribs removed), torn in half
2 avocados, sliced
½ English cucumber, ribboned with a peeler
1 ½ cups sugar snap peas
1 ½cups packed microgreens or sprouts
1 ½ cups fresh mint leaves
1 ½ cups fresh basil leaves

Directions:

1. To make the green curry sauce, in a high-powered blender, add the coconut cream, ¼ cup cilantro, green curry paste, garlic, lime juice, vinegar, sugar, sea salt and chili flakes. Blend until very smooth. Transfer to a small saucepan and bring to a low simmer, cooking about 2 to 4 minutes, until slightly thicker and reduced.

2. Once all your vegetables are prepped for the fresh rolls, fill a wide shallow dish that’s slightly larger than the rice paper sheets with tepid water so you can soak the whole sheet. Soak one rice paper sheet at a time, for 10 to 20 seconds. You still want to feel the cross- hatch pattern on the surface of the rice sheets. Don’t oversoak or it will be too soft and hard to roll.

Related: Veganism Made Easy: Lauren Toyota’s Fail-Safe Tips for Eating Plant-Based (And Loving It)

3. Assemble the rolls one at a time. Lay the wet rice paper sheets on a work surface. Add a piece of the lettuce and divide the avocado, cucumber, snap peas, microgreens or sprouts and fresh herbs among the sheets in whatever order you like. Roll one side of the rice paper over the filling, tucking it in as you start rolling again and also folding the sides in. Continue rolling until completely sealed. Place on a plate or cut in half if you prefer.

4. Serve with the green curry dipping sauce. Leftover dipping sauce will get thick from refrigeration. Add a teaspoon of water at a time to thin it out until it’s a smooth, dippable consistency.

Cover of cookbook 'hot for food all day'Excerpted from hot for food all day by Lauren Toyota. Copyright © 2021 by Lauren Toyota. Published by Penguin Canada, a division of Penguin Random House Canada Limited. Reproduced by arrangement with the Publisher. All rights reserved.

 

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Irresistible No-Bake Vegan Strawberry Cheesecake Bites

I’m over chocolate on Valentine’s Day, which is why we created this sultry two-bite dessert you can whip up for yourself, your sweetheart, or all your single gal pals! They’re vegan, raw and gluten-free, giving you just the energy boost you need for some alone time — or, staying up all night gawking at Tinder.

strawberry-cheesecake-bites

No-Bake Vegan Strawberry Cheesecake Bites

Ingredients:

Crust (makes 24 mini cheesecakes)
1 cup pecans
6 medjool dates
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 tsp sea salt

Filling
1 cup raw cashews (soaked for 3 hours)
1/2 cup frozen strawberry slices
1/4 cup agave nectar
1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
2 Tbsp lemon juice

Swirl/Topping
1/2 cup frozen strawberries, melted

strawberry-cheesecake-bites3Read More: Lauren Toyota’s Fail-Safe Tips for Eating Plant-Based (And Loving It)

Directions:

Crust
1. Remove the pits from the medjool dates and soak them in warm water for 10 minutes. Drain the water from the dates and place in a food processor along with the remaining ingredients. Process until the nuts are crumbled and the crust is sticking together on its own.
2. Press about 1 1/2 tsp of the mixture into the bottom of each mini muffin cup.

Tip: To remove the cheesecakes easily from the tray, cut 4-inch strips of parchment paper and place those in the bottom of each cup. Press the crust mixture on top of these. Then when the cheesecakes are done setting in the freezer, you can pull on the parchment tabs to lift the cheesecakes out.

strawberry-cheesecake-bites2

Filling
1. Drain cashews from the soaking water and rinse under fresh water. Then add them to a high speed blender or Vitamix along with frozen strawberries, agave nectar, melted coconut oil, and lemon juice. Blend until smooth.
2. Pour this mixture into a bowl and set aside. Clean out the blender to make the strawberry puree for the swirl.

Swirl/Topping
1. Allow these strawberries to melt at room temperature or heat over low heat in sauce pan for a few minutes until soft. Then blend this in a blender into a smooth purée.
2. Take a scant Tbsp of the cashew filling and pour on top of the pressed crust. Then take 1/2 tsp of strawberry purée and dollop on top of the cashew filling. Take the end of a toothpick and swirl the two mixtures around to make a fun artsy pattern!
3. Freeze the cheesecakes for 1-2 hours until solid. Remove them from the mini muffin trays and allow to thaw for 10-15 minutes before biting into them.

Craving more plant-based Lauren Toyota recipes? See here for her Buckwheat Pancakes with Brandied Strawberries and Coconut Whip (pictured) and her Easy 2-Ingredient Vegan Peanut Butter Cups.