This year I wanted to make a vegan version of Gefilte fish – a version without the cruelty and death, without the cold tastelessness and slime. And I wanted it to look like the original and taste like fish (but better). This is the recipe I came up with. It’s made with chickpeas and sauteed vegetables. The fish flavor comes from the seasoning – kelp and dulce flakes (if you don’t have both you can just use whichever you have), Old Bay and lemon. They look just like Gefilte fish, the texture is spot on and they taste like a much yummier version of the original “treat.”
Gefilte ‘Fish’ [Vegan, Gluten-Free]
- 1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
- ½ small onion, chopped
- 2 small or 1 large celery stalk, chopped
- 1 large carrot, chopped (save some for garnish)
- 2 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1-15 oz. can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- Salt and black pepper to taste
- 1 tsp. Old Bay seasoning
- 1 ½ tsp. dulce flakes
- 1 tsp. kelp flakes
- 1/8 tsp. cayenne pepper (optional)
- Zest and juice of one lemon
- Red cabbage, shredded
- Prepared horseradish, if desired
- Heat the oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Add the onion, celery, carrots and garlic and let the sweat for about 3-4 minutes. You don’t want them to brown or change color. The veggies should just get softer. Add the chickpeas to the skillet and toss with the veggies. Mix in the seasonings. Remove from the heat and let cool.
- Transfer the chickpeas and veggie mixture to a food processor. Add the lemon zest and juice of half the lemon. Pulse the mixture and then process until smooth. Taste for any seasoning adjustments. Using a measuring cup, scoop 1/3 cup of the mixture and mold it into a gefilte fish shape. The shape is like a small football or a lemon. Lay the molded gefilte “fish” on a small baking sheet or plate. Repeat with the rest of the mixture. Cover the gefilte fishies with plastic wrap, letting the wrap fit around each piece. Refrigerate for at least an hour or until ready to serve.
- Serve each piece of Gefilte “fish” on a small bed of red cabbage and garnished with a small slice or a few shreds of carrot. Squeeze the remaining half lemon over the “fish” and cabbage. Serve with horseradish, if desired.