Pass the Paté , Pretty Please



Nut spreads and patés are foundational to sustaining a high raw and/or vegan lifestyle.  Prounouced “pah-tay”, they are loaded with protein, good fats and have the unctuousness of something very rich and satisfying.  They are also very filling — if you are trying to eat more raw and living foods, but find yourself getting hungry or feeling deprived, try having a scoop in a bell pepper, hollowed out tomatoe or wrapped in lettuce or cabbage leaf.

You can even substitute a nut paté/spread for egg, chicken and tuna salads on bread.  Kids respond very well to them.  If someone has a nut allergy or sensitivity, they can usually handle seeds, like sunflower or pumpkin.

Nut Paté is often mistaken for being meat!  We served a sunflower seed spread over flax and pumpkin seed crackers at a wine tasting event at the Museum of Science & Industry here in Tampa and at least a dozen people told us it was “the best liver pate” they had every tasted.  Maybe it was the wine, but we had a hard time convincing them that it was all vegan.

Watch the host’s reaction to my walnut paté in this video from the Daytime show:

The paté featured in the photo is a combination I put together when my goddaughter was visiting based on what I had available and what seemed to go together.  This was not only delicious, but teenager approved!  Eventually I made it in the local raw foods class I was teaching for 6 years and everyone loved it.  Combination:  Soaked almonds, kalamata olives, carrots, dried rosemary and a small amount of olive oil or tahini. 

One of my go-to spreads is made with shelled raw uncooked peas, which you can find now in my grocery stores.  Just follow the directions below substituting the nuts/seeds with the peas.  Another thing I love to do is form the spread into silver dollar shaped patties and dehydrate them on parchment paper for a few hours.  They become sensational nuggets of flavor that I add to salads for more ooomph and protein.  I even take a few with me when I go to restaurants – they make great conversation starters!  My Wild Mushroom Nut Burgers are essentially dehydrated paté.

How to make a nut or seed paté:

  1. Soak the nuts or seeds anywhere from 6-12 hours (for cashews they become soft enough in as little as 20 minutes as in these Sweet & Savory Cashew Wraps)
  2. Soaking the seeds or nuts not only softens them and alters their texture, it also removes anti-nutrients like phytic acid from the skins.  Make sure to drain the soak water and rinse them!
  3. In a food processor, place the nuts or seeds (combinations are also yummy!) along with lemon juice, a little olive oil and/or tahini (sesame paste), nutritional yeast (this gives it the “meaty” flavor) and sea salt and blend until it has a spread-like consistency.
  4. Taste and adjust flavorings, adding any spices or herbs you like.
  5. Add chopped veggies and fruits, like scallions, celery, onion, olives , peas – even pomegranate kernels or cranberries – ONLY to the amount you plan to consume immediately.  If you store the remainder with the chopped veggies or fruit, those will tend to get soggy and influence the flavor.
  6. Leftovers store very well – up to 3 days but some of them become more intense in flavoring.

Enjoy and let us know how you like them!

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