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Sunday, January 12, 2014

Sandwich Loaf


When I was a little girl my mother used to buy a product called "Nuteena."  I hated that stuff and would make a great display of displeasure calling it "dog food."    Mom was always quick to tell me not to repeat that in front of my uncle because it may offend him as he liked the wretched stuff.   We were expected to eat what was placed before us so I ate the disagreeable Nuteena and swore I'd never eat it when I grew up.  Funny how tastes change...

Nuteena was a vegetarian meat replacement made from peanut butter or some type of nut butter mixed with a few other ingredients and came in cans.  There are also recipes for homemade "nutmeat" as it is called, and I can vaguely remember Mom making this as well.  It would have been used in sandwiches or combined with other ingredients to make a casserole.

A few years ago I came across a recipe for a mock salmon loaf which to anyone familiar with Nuteena or nutmeat seemed to be almost the same except for a few extra ingredients.  I made it and it was good but I can truly say it was not like salmon.  So I began experimenting with the recipe adding and replacing this or that and came up with this recipe reminiscent of a sliced deli sandwich loaf.  It still has somewhat the taste and texture of a nutmeat/Nuteena but with the addition of herbs and spices it becomes quite palatable and even "moreish" (a favourite term of Aunt Sadie). 

I decided to bake this in my pudding cans (crushed pineapple cans) so I could slice it like a bologna or salami  and have it for sandwiches.  Don and I were pleased with the results and have been enjoying our "boloney" sandwiches all week.  

I haven't named the recipe any particular name like a "Veggie Bologna" or Veggie Whatever"  because when you bite into something with a name like this you automatically associate it with the real thing and then you may be disappointed in that it doesn't taste like the real thing. (Mock Salmon being a prime example.)  So I just called it a Sandwich Loaf so you may begin to make new associations in your brain.  

To slice the loaf it must be well chilled as it isn't firm like a real deli loaf. 

Sandwich Loaf
½ cup nut or seed butter (peanut, cashew, almond, tahini, etc...)
1 cup tomato or V8 juice
2 tablespoons margarine or oil
¼ cup onion, chopped fine
2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped or 2 teaspoons dry parsley
½ - 1 teaspoon savory, oregano or basil, or mixture or any favourite herbs or spices
½ - 1 teaspoon salt
2 eggs or equivalent in egg whites, beaten until frothy
1 cup shredded raw carrots
1 cup toasted bread crumbs

Mix nut butter and tomato juice until smooth. Sauté onions and parsley in margarine or oil until soft.  Mix onions with nut butter mixture.  Add remaining ingredients and mix well.  Place mixture in greased and parchment paper lined loaf pan or clean spaghetti sauce can.  Cover with foil so top won’t become crusty. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes (may need longer if using a can.) at 350 degrees F.  The top of the loaf should not be wet or sticky when tested for doneness.  Remove from oven when baked and let cool in pan or can.  When cool remove from pan or can, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until cold.  When ready to use, slice thinly for sandwiches.  Serve on bread with lettuce, tomato, mayonnaise, pickles, etc...


Today I used tahini, a sesame seed butter instead of peanut butter.  If using a natural nut or seed butter make sure you mix it well to incorporate the oil that separates from the ground nuts. 


Mix in the tomato juice gradually.


The nut butter and juice will seem to curdle but keep mixing until you have a nice smooth mixture.


Today I used a vegetable juice and an egg replacer.  
Egg replacers are egg whites trying to masquerade as whole eggs.

Sauté the onions until soft.  I was busy and my onions got a little golden but that's alright.  I toasted the bread crumbs for a few minutes in a 350 degree oven.  I used 2 medium carrots to make up the 1 cup of shredded carrots.

Mix all the ingredients together, including any herbs or spices you are using.  If using regular nut butters with added salt you may want to go with the lower amount of salt in the recipe.  Taste and then adjust the seasonings.


I baked the loaf in my pudding cans.  There was too much for one can so I had the second can about a quarter full.  Next time I'll use a spaghetti sauce can as they hold more and are taller.   Loosely cover with foil because as the mixture bakes it rises a little over the can but then settles back down.


Here are samples of loaves made with peanut butter (top slices) and tahini (bottom slices).  I like the flavour of the tahini slices better than the peanut butter but both are good.  Next time I'm going to try cashew butter.   See how nice the cold loaf slices for sandwiches.


 What a lovely lunch!



4 comments:

  1. I made this & took it to an after soup luncheon. It was a hit! I didn't bring any home with me. I used tahini. I think I'll try peanut better next time. Thank you for sharing,

    Nadine. orvieanne2@gmail.com

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  2. I'm so pleased this turned out so well for you and for those who ate it. The peanut butter version is good too.

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  3. As a long-time vegetarian - turning- vegan, I have scoured the 'net for a decent mock fish loaf recipe. I will be trying your version this weekend! Thanks so much for what looks like a great recipe!

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