Vegan Carrot Mousse: Easy Appetizer!

by Gena on July 11, 2012

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Thank you for the overwhelming responses to my PunchTab sponsored juicer giveaway! As I tweeted excitedly yesterday, nothing could make me happier than to give a CR reader the gift of green juice. I forgot to mention in my post that this is a special giveaway in that it’ll be up for a whole month, so please keep the entries coming! The PunchTab entry key will remain open on my sidebar, for all to see. Please share word!

Today, we’re back to the usual business here at CR: food. It’s been a while since I made a non-hummus dip/spread; when things get busy, I tend to revert to stuff that’s really tried and true. Lately, however, the impact of over 5 weeks of repetitive, uninspired food is getting to me. During my 48 hours of summer last weekend, I made a couple of old favorites and new dishes: granted, nothing fancy, but one of the highlights was this delicious carrot “mousse,” which I whipped up in about 15 minutes flat.

I had a few sources of inspiration for this recipe. One was Ricki’s wonderful holiday carrot pate, made with silken tofu. This dish is far prettier than what I made, but the idea is the same: a light, savory carrot mixture for dipping or spreading.

The other was Susan’s shiny happy hummus, which was actually one of my very first homemade hummus recipes. I made this, as I did many of Susan’s recipes, in the year or so before I switched to a plant based diet, as I was hesitantly dipping my toe into the waters of vegan food prep. It didn’t disappoint! Light, sweet, and tasty, this is one of my favorites.

Shiny Happy Carrot Hummus

My carrot mousse is slightly lighter than both of these recipes in texture, but the basic idea is the same. For healthy fat and substance, I used pumpkin seeds, which worked beautifully. That, plus some miso and a touch of sesame oil, yielded a super simple and easy to make dish that was also incredibly tasty when all was said and done. Here it is, along with some homemade herb flax crackers:

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And here’s how to make it.

Vegan Carrot Mousse (vegan, gluten free, soy free)

Makes about 2 cups

1/2 lb baby carrots or regular carrots, peeled and chopped
1 1/2 tbsp mellow white miso (or whatever you have)
1 tsp toasted sesame oil
1/3 cup pumpkin seeds
2 tsp rice vinegar
1 large pitted date
Water

Boil baby carrots or regular carrots till tender. Drain and place them in a high speed blender with other ingredients. Blend, using the tamp attachment and as much water as you need to get things moving (I used a little less than 1/4 cup) till smooth.

If you’re using a food processor instead, first grind the pumpkin seeds till they’re in a fine meal. Then add remaining ingredients and blend, using a few tbsp of water if needed, till very smooth. Adjust seasoning to taste, and serve!

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It’s a perfect recipe for spreading on crackers, but it’s also very nice as a spread in raw sushi rolls, as a dip for romaine lettuce, zucchini or cucumbers, or as a creative substitute for mayonnaise (or veganaise!) in sandwiches. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Before I go, I wanted to mention a special upcoming event. I’m sure that many of you are going to Blogher 2012–or that you’ve at least heard about it! What you may not have heard of is Blogher’s HealthMinder Day, which is a special day devoted to helping you get expert health information and learn about the latest online tools and gadgets to manage your own total wellness, and that of your loved ones. Speakers will include Terry Waters, Elisa Camahort Page, Roni Noone, and me!

The panel I’m presenting on is called “Dedication vs. Obsession,” and it should be a really illuminating look into the fitness/healthy living realm. Over the weekend, I want to get some CR reader feedback on this topic, so please start pondering it!

On that note, it’s back to the grind. Happy hump day!

xo

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{ 24 comments… read them below or add one }

Beth July 11, 2012 at 1:21 pm

This looks awesome, Gena, and I’m sure I’ll make it this week. Is there a chance you could post a recipe for those crackers, too? They look like the crackers of my dreams!

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Gena July 11, 2012 at 3:16 pm

Haha. They may look like the crackers of your dreams, but right now, they are not the crackers of your dreams. I’m working on them! Right now they’re turning out good enough to eat so as not to waste food, but not good enough for my readers. Soon ;-)

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Kathryn July 12, 2012 at 1:02 pm

I was about to race to comment and say what about the crackers!?!? Glad I checked first. They LOOK amazing!

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Beth July 12, 2012 at 3:05 pm

I can be patient for beauties like those!

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bitt July 11, 2012 at 1:30 pm

perfect thing to get me out of a hummus rut. and good for carrot season!

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Averie @ Averie Cooks July 11, 2012 at 1:49 pm

Great way to get in some carrots (or pumpkin or squash or cooked sweet potatoes – bet all of them would work!) :)

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Shann July 11, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Those crackers look amazing too!! Did you make those as well?

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Gena July 11, 2012 at 3:16 pm

See the above, in response to my first comment :)!

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Laura July 11, 2012 at 2:49 pm

That sounds wonderful! Beautiful photograph, too.

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kimberley maunder July 11, 2012 at 3:06 pm

Hi great ideas, but what I really would love to have is the flax seed crackers recipe. Hope that is ok as they look delicious and crunchy plus healthy because of the flax seeds? Many thanks

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Gena July 11, 2012 at 3:17 pm

Hey Kimberly! I’m working in the recipe as we speak. It’s not blog-worthy yet, but soon, I hope.

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Kathy Patalsky July 11, 2012 at 3:14 pm

golden deliciousness! yum yum yum. And congrats on the PunchTab giveaway :) Juicer.. awesome!

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Lisa @ The Raw Serenity July 11, 2012 at 3:46 pm

Gena this mouse look perfect! Can’t wait to try it.
So glad the comp is going all month because every time I try I “punch” the tab isn’t there ( perhaps due to the fantastic response)
Being in Australia means I can’t get to Blogher but will someone be filming your speeches? X

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Abby July 11, 2012 at 4:19 pm

I think carrots are the new “it” thing, as I’ve seen similar recipes on a couple other blogs. I just love that it’s so colorful ;)

As for the panel discussion, you know my story! If you need any quotes for anything, just let me know.

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Stefania @ Revitalize with Stefania July 11, 2012 at 4:29 pm

oooo looks delicious! :)

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Janae @ Bring-Joy July 11, 2012 at 7:16 pm

Jealous you’re going to to BlogHer! I went to BlogHer Food in June & it was really illuminating. It’s always a good thing to meet people in real life.

Hope you have fun, & the panel discussion sounds like it will be a good one. (I believe I met Roni at BlogHer Food).

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marissa July 11, 2012 at 8:34 pm

I’m liking the carrot/miso/pumpkin seed blend. I make mixtures like this for sushi. Nice to see you suggested that!

That’s a really loaded, but interesting, panel topic. I’m sure it will generate some thought-provoking points. I think you used the perfect word, “illuminating.” Looking forward to hearing about it.

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Lexi @ You, Me, & A World to See July 11, 2012 at 9:37 pm

Carrots <3 Love those little orange beauties, and I bet they taste wonderful when pureed with some lovely little pepitas!

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Ricki July 11, 2012 at 10:16 pm

Love it! I can’t wait to try this. And it sounds so easy to make, too! And congrats on the panel–how awesome!! (Wish I could go. . . .). :)

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Kumar July 12, 2012 at 5:12 am

Just seeing the pictures makes my taste buds wanting it…

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Hannah July 12, 2012 at 5:14 am

Oh language, what a fickle beast! Hummus, pate, dip – these all sound magical to me. “Mousse”, however, makes my soul flicker in the opposite direction. However, the ingredients are all magic, so I would happily forgo my linguistic disinclinations and try it. ;)

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Christine (The Raw Project) July 12, 2012 at 8:16 am

This looks wonderful, I adore the flavor combo and pate, so I need to try this soon! Thanks!

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Juicingpedia July 12, 2012 at 2:24 pm

Carrot tip! I love it and am ready to try it Have you tried serving it hot? If you have does it change the taste for the better or worse? …I guess I can just make it and try it myself :)

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Kristy July 13, 2012 at 1:48 pm

That looks fantastic, Gena! I love the addition of dates and miso! Yum!

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