Jackfruit-Stuffed Cucumber Timbales Recipe

Cucumbers are great and I don’t eat enough of them — they’re very refreshing and cooling. They are special in Ayurvedic medicine for reasons I don’t really understand, maybe because they have a soothing-cooling effect. They go really well with jackfruit, which isn’t sweet even though it’s a fruit. Lots of people use jackfruit as a vegan “pork” but I think it’s better used in cold salads like this one.

I came up with this recipe based on a similar one from Jazzy Vegetarian and combined it with a recipe I saw on Pinterest.

Everyone thought these were delicious and could not get enough of them — hollowed out fresh cucumbers stuffed with flaky, savory jackfruit, roasted walnuts, and delicate caper puree. A fun way to eat your salad and (savory) fruit in a little drum shape.




2 large cucumbers, peeled
1 can jackfruit in brine, drained OR 1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 cup walnuts, roughly chopped
3 green onions, roughly chopped
1/2 teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning or seasoning of your choice
1 tablespoon capers (rinsed), green olives, or pickle relish
1 teaspoon salt or to taste
2/3 cup vegan mayo such as Vegenaise or Just Mayo


Peel the cucumbers and cut them into 3/4 inch slices, set aside.

Toast the chopped walnuts in a dry pan on medium heat for about five minutes, keeping an eye on them. Once they begin to release a nice fragrance, toss them and roast for a minute more. Turn off heat and then them sit.

Drain the jackfruit and combine jackfruit, roasted walnuts, green onions, Old Bay or other seasoning, capers, and mayo in a food processor or blender. Pulse a few times until everything is minced and blended but not all the way into paste.

Hollow out the seeds cucumber rounds on one side with a small spoon so the filling can sit in there. Stuff with the jackfruit blend and serve as an appetizer or in the place of a salad.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 15 October, 2013: Jackfruit Crab-meat Salad Sushi Rolls

I was actually shocked to find there were no jackfruit crabmeat sushi recipes online yet. As far as I know, I am the first to attempt a jackfruit sushi maki. Jackfruit, which is often used for vegan pulled pork, reminded me way more of crabmeat the first time I worked with it. I don’t miss seafood so much anymore, however, these rolls are very seafood-like. They’re very much like the sushi rolls with imitation crabmeat in spicy mayonnaise so popular in American sushi restaurants.

vegan jackfruit crab salad sushi maki

vegan mock crabmeat salad sushi rice roll

vegetarian sushi no dairy no meat crab sushi jackfruit


About 3.5 cups cooked sushi rice
2 nori sheets
2 tablespoons vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar

2 tablespoons toasted sesame seeds and 1 tablespoon black sesame seeds

1 cup boiled jackfruit (I was able to find a fresh one) or jackfruit from a can (get it in brine, not syrup)
1 tablespoon vegan cream cheese
2 teaspoons chili sauce or Sriacha
1 teaspoon dulse flakes or ground up kombu (or any seaweed powder)


Make the crabmeat salad by boiling peeled, seeded jackfruit chunks for 10 minutes. Alternately, buy prepared jackfruit in brine. Strain the jackfruit and allow to cool if you boiled it. Fork mash the cooled jackfruit and place the jackfruit in between 3 or 4 paper towels. Roll the jackfruit in the paper towels to get the moisture out. This is an important step if you want to make it into sushi maki because otherwise the salad makes everything too wet to roll.

Transfer the dry chunks of jackfruit to a food processor with onion, cream cheese, chili sauce, and seaweed flakes or powder. Pulse until jackfruit is smaller but do not completely puree. Transfer the jackfruit crab salad to a small bowl.

Mix vinegar and sugar together and microwave for 30 seconds so sugar dissolves. Add vinegar/sugar to cooked sushi rice, mix until incorporated.

On a clean surface, make inside out rolls.

Roll in sesame seeds and cut with a serrated knife.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 13 October, 2013: Sushi Maki With Cooked Fillings

more vegan sushi


2 carrots, peeled and sliced
1.5 cups spinach leaves
1 cup maitake or oyster mushrooms
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon oil

1 tablespoon sesame seeds

4 cups cooked sushi rice (I used Botan calrose rise)
2 tablespoons rice vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar

3 nori sheets

2 tablespoons sesame seeds

DIRECTIONS: Rinse and cook sushi rice according to package directions. Mix vinegar and sugar in a small bowl and heat for 30 seconds in the microwave until sugar dissolves. Dump the vinegar mixture into sushi rice and stir. Taste and add salt if needed.

Oil a large pan and bring to medium heat. Sauté carrots, mushrooms, and spinach on 3 different sides of the pan. Keep them separate and add water a teaspoon at a time to the spinach pile until the spinach pile wilts. Once it does, take the spinach out. The mushrooms, now slightly browned, can be taken out. The carrots will soften in about 5 minutes. Take them out before they lose too much firmness.

Roast the sesame seeds by putting them in a small, dry pan (no oil) at medium heat. In about 5 minutes, they will start becoming golden-brown. Take them off the heat as soon as they start browning noticeably. Set aside.

Make the rolls. Place nori sheet shiny side down on a clean, dry surface. Start by spreading about 1.5 cups rice evenly across a nori sheet. Next, lay a strip of carrots, mushrooms, and spinach about 1/4 of the way in to the nori. Sprinkle with a big pinch of roasted sesame seed. Roll the fillings into the roll. Some people use a mat for this but I do not. Set the roll seam side down on a clean surface. Once you have finished rolling all three rolls, cut them into bite sized pieces with a serrated knife.


Daily Vegan Lunch for 22 September, 2013: Loaded Baked Potato Skins

vegan baked potato skins


6 medium-sized Yukon Gold or russet potatoes (russets require longer cooking time)
1 recipe Best Ever Cheez
1.5 cups chopped green onion or chives
Liberal sprinkles of vegan baco-bits


Wash and prick potatoes with a fork several times (to avoid exploding potatoes) and bake potatoes for 30 minutes in the oven at 400 degrees. Alternately, prick the potatoes and microwave them for 3 – 5 minutes per potato depending on the potato’s size.

Allow the potatoes to cool and make the cheez sauce.

Once potatoes are cool, cut them in half and carefully scoop out the insides of the potato, leaving about 3/4 inch of potato and the skin. Save the inside potato mash for later use. I put mine in soup. Broil the potato skins at 400 degrees for 5 minutes on each side, scooped hollow side and normal skin side.

Fill each potato with a heaping tablespoon or so of cheez sauce. Sprinkle with chives or green onion and baco-bits.

Daily Vegan Lunch for July 20, 2013: Kale Chips and Roasted Chickpeas

vegan snacks kale chips and roasted chickpeas

Today I didn’t include a recipe for lunch, just two easy snacks I really like that go well with soups and sandwiches.


7 cups curly kale, washed
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1.5 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons nutritional yeast

parchment paper for baking


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Wash the kale well and drain, then transfer it to a cutting board. Cut out the stems and rip the kale into large pieces, they will shrink a bit in the oven. Put the kale pieces in a large bowl. Toss the kale gently with the oil and salt using your hands until salt and oil are evenly distributed throughout. Add the nutritional yeast and stir in using a spoon so it coats the leaves.

Spread a cookie sheet with parchment paper. It is very important you use parchment paper because otherwise kale will stick mercilessly to your baking sheet, trust me, I’ve been there and done that.

Lay kale leaves on the parchment-lined cookie sheet, evenly distributing them. Bake at 350 for 30 – 40 minutes until the leaves are crunchy.


1 can chickpeas (13.5 ounces), rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon smoked paprika

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix olive oil, salt, cumin, and paprika in a small bowl. Lay the chickpeas on a rimmed cookie sheet, no parchment necessary. Pour the spiced oil over them and toss them around the cookie sheet to coat. If your cookie sheet has no edges, just put the chickpeas and oil in a bowl and toss them. Bake for 20 minutes at 400 degrees. Take the chickpeas out and turn them over with a spatula. Cook for another 10 – 20 minutes, until chickpeas are crunchy.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 28 June, 2013: Best Ever Vegan Nachos

If you love nachos but don’t love that the average small plate of them has 19 grams of fat and 400 calories, this recipe is for you. Oats and roasted red pepper replace cow’s milk fat so there are way less calories and no suffering for any mommy or baby cows. The sauce doesn’t clump in nasty, greasy little brownish balls like the nacho cheese sauce I remember as a child, instead it remains smooth and yummy even if you refrigerate it.

This recipe can also be used to make fantastic Vegan Bacon Cheese Fries or Vegan Mac & Cheese (leave out the taco seasoning).

vegan nachos



About 1.5 cups corn chips per serving
Jalapeno peppers from a can or jar
Chopped tomatoes
Vegan sour cream (I used a tablespoon of Tofutti vegan cream cheese thinned with a tablespoon of water)
Chopped onions
Black olives (I did not have them)


1/2 cup oatmeal
1 cup water
1/4 cup chopped onion
1 teaspoon dijon mustard
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1/4 cup roasted red pepper (I use organic roasted red pepper from a jar from the Italian section of the grocery store)
1/2 a lemon’s juice
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons taco seasoning OR 1 teaspoon cumin, 1/2 teaspoon chili powder, and 1/2 teaspoon garlic
Tabasco or Sriacha, to taste

2 teaspoons arrowroot powder or cornstarch


Cook 1/2 cup oatmeal and 1 cup water for 3 minutes in the microwave, stirring at 1 minute and 30 seconds. Combine thin oatmeal with all other sauce ingredients in a blender or food processor. Blend until very smooth, up to 5 minutes. Transfer mixture to a small pan on the stovetop. Cook at medium heat, stirring constantly until it thickens. Cheese sauce is now ready for nachos.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 9 May, 2013: Walnut Spread and Cucumbers on Kale

Walnut spread with cucumbers on kale



1 cup walnuts or raw walnuts (I used organic regular walnuts)
Water for soaking
2 tablespoons raw onion
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon soy sauce
1 clove minced garlic
Salt to taste


4 leaves kale or chard

1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and chopped
3/4 cup chopped tomatoes (I chopped a large handful of organic grape tomatoes)
1 green onion, chopped

Soak walnuts in water for 6+ hours (I soaked them overnight). Drain walnuts and add them to a food processor with all other ingredients. Process walnut mixture, stopping intermittently and scraping down the sides with a rubber spatula. Add up to a tablespoon of water if necessary to get the mixture to puree.

Mix the chopped tomatoes, cucumber, and green onion in a bowl, set aside.

Massage kale leaves by rolling them in your fingers after washing them and generally abusing/manhandling them until they are tender. Chard would probably have worked better for these wraps but either way, they were bound to be messy. They are absolutely delicious though so it is worth it.

(I am planning on converting these into appetizers for my upcoming Recital by topping a seedless cucumber with walnut spread and sticking on an itty bitty piece of kale with a little tomato and onion on top. Hopefully it will work out.)

Take a kale leaf and spread it with 2 tablespoons of the walnut mixture. Top with a tablespoon or two of the cucumber mixture, roll up and eat.

Daily Vegan Lunch for 11 February, 2013: Roasted Red Pepper Pesto Wraps

roasted red pepper pesto wraps

Mmmm, pesto.

My apologies for this picture. I was not super-hungry so I didn’t make a huge wrap, unfortunately that meant the inside ingredients are barely showing.


1 cup fresh basil and 1 cup spinach leaves or 2 cups basil
1/3 cup olive oil
1/3 cup walnuts
3 cloves garlic
Salt to taste


Combine all ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until basil is finely chopped and spreadable.


Roasted red peppers (about 1/4 cup per sandwich, from a can or roasting directions below)
1 Tablespoon pesto
6-8 fresh spinach leaves
1/4 cup sweet corn kernels, thawed in microwave

Roast red peppers by washing peppers, cutting them down the middle, taking out the seeds and pith, and putting them on a cookie sheet in the oven at 400 degrees for 20 minutes.

To make wraps, microwave tortilla for 15 seconds. Place ingredients in the middle but slightly to one side of your future roll. Wrap by folding the ends in and then roll the burrito down the cutting board.

Vegan Fried Tofu Cutlets

Vegan Fried Tofu Slices

1 package of firm tofu, drained and sliced into 3/4 inch thickness

1/2 cup nutritional yeast flakes

2 tablespoons onion powder

1/4 teaspoon salt (to taste)

1/2 cup of potato flour or unbleached regular flour

Mix all ingredients except tofu together in a bowl.  Dredge tofu slices until they are coated on both sides with flour mixture and fry in a little oil in a pan until golden brown.

My favorite way of eating these is with a bowl of brown rice and wilted spinach with a drizzle of soy sauce, but I also like fried portobello mushrooms & spinach like in the picture below.  I suppose you could eat the fried tofu cutlets in sandwiches.  Not me though.  The only kind of sandwich I genuinely like is a veggie burger or plain peanut butter on wheat.