Sunflower shoots spread – Vegan | Gluten-free | Raw

I made this delicious spread nearly two-three months back.  Yes, the pictures are that old too.  I had been to Godrej Nature’s Basket’s new outlet at Ghatkopar once, and you know how they stock the best things when the outlet is recent.  I found a pretty box of fresh microgreens in the herb section and it had a tag that read ‘sunflower shoots’.  I imagined sprinkling it arounds salads, dropping a few here and there while styling some other monochrome foods that need a lot of imagination to look pretty on a plate.  But when I delicately rinsed the greens the day after, I forgot about reserving some green for styling completely.  The thick texture of the leaves seemed to make them good for the spread.  I bit on a few leaves and found that the shoots were nutty, sweet, and juicy all at the same time, and the best feature was that they were very, very refreshing.  I have found most shoots to have a bitter or astringent quality to them, but sunflower shoots do not have either.  That is what renders them so perfect for a spread.

I am sure babies will love the spread, but if giving, omit the nutiritional yeast, keep the salt to a pinch and eliminate the cashews and do not garnish with crispy capers and olive oil or any thing else.


Sunflower shoots spread with cashewnuts - Raw, vegan, gluten-free

I make a lot of spreads and I am sure you know how much the members of the TT household love it.  We smear them liberally on toast, on rotis, bhakris, smother our idlis and dosas with them, and generously scoop them onto crackers and papadams!  Yes, we do.  We are a little fanatical when it comes to using spreads. :)  It is rare not to find a pesto, a green spread or a hummus in my refrigerator.

This one is easy and I am sure you will have everything else but these greens in your pantry! Soon I will have them in a pot on my window sill too.  The idea of getting greens from a mall is not as welcome as snipping them off your own little herb garden.  For someone with a not-so-green-thumb getting these to shoot out of their seeds in a pot is one big challenge!

Sunflower microgreens with cashew spread | Raw | Vegan | Gluten-free

Recipe: Sunflower shoots spread – Vegan | Gluten-free | Raw
What is it?  A spread for breads, a chutney to go with dosai/idli, and all kinds of flatbreads, a dip for crisp salads and vegetable fingers.

Ingredients:

Sunflower shoots (tender) – 2 cups, with stems

Sunflower seeds – 2 tbsp., soaked in water for 15-20 minutes

Cashewnuts – 4-5, more if you would like it more creamy

Nutritional yeast flakes – 2 tbsp. (or as per taste)

Sea salt – to taste

Water – just enough to blitz and bring the mix to a spreadable consistency

Method:

The shoots came with soil so I cut them off on the surface with kitchen scissors and rinsed lightly to remove the soil.  Set aside on a towel to let off the excess water.

Place in a chutney grinder with the sunflower seeds, cashewnuts, a little salt and water.  Blitz till creamy or textural, as per your liking.  Spoon the mix from the sides and blitz again till the required consistency is reached.

Remove into a bowl, add the nutritional yeast flakes, and adjust the salt and water.

Optional:

A drizzle of extra virgin olive would not hurt.  Some crispy capers or a sprinkling of toasted sesame seeds are very tasty too.

Sunflower seed sprouts and cashew spread | Ideal for toast, dips, and guilt free snacks

Since I toasted the bread slices with drops of olive oil I could not bring myself to add any to the spread, and, honestly there is no need.

Thanks to all those who have tried my original method for making cashew yogurt and told me that it works.  I was a bit low after hearing from a few people that it did not work.  I reiterate that temperature is of utmost importance and the recipe is fool proof.  Do check the update where I have given the temperatures.

Thanks also to other readers who have time and again told me that my recipes worked for them.  This salsa de tomate is a favourite at the TT household and when Susie said it was not only intense and delicious but also freezes well, she made my day!

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Comments

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  1. Good to see you post, after ages. R

  2. Looks delicious and simple to make. I love spreads too. Could you tell me how you store them. In plastic/ steel or glass.in fact i would love it if you could do a separate post on essential kitchen utensils and tips on stroring and freezing. My other query is do you use separate tawas for dosa and roti. And do u recommend nonstick cook ware. Thanks

    • I use glass/ceramic jars (sometimes baranis) for storage of spreads. Thanks for the idea. I will do that sometime. I use separate tawas for roti and dosa, and all my tawas are cast iron. I have four tawas of cast iron. The one I use for neer dosa is a small skillet and I also use it for making tarts and pizzas. The dosa tawa is medium sized, and my large tawa is reserved for rotis. I find that making rotis spoils the seasoning. I cannot explain how but it does. I do not use or recommend non-stick cookware.

  3. Dint even know sunflower shoots were edible… This recipe sounds interesting… Good to see a new recipe here…

    I tried your cashew parsley spread… it was awesome… I mean even the non vegans opted to have that over other cheese spread on the table…:)

  4. Hi, I’m very happy to read your post after a long time. Welcome back!
    I have tried your kadhi recipe which cam out well.

  5. Thanks for the lovely tips Harini. will now buy a Cast iron Tawa for rotis too.Now you must make that post on -” How does one season the cast iron tawa before making the first roti and how to care for our cast iron tawas…please please do. with pics of course. will be of huge help to lots of us out there, who end up with rusty tawas. Thanks a ton again

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