When I first came to Egypt, I was not yet vegan. I tried everything everyone put in front of me and I liked almost all of it. Ru’ak (a pie made with ground meat and cracker-like sheets) was one of my favorites. But since we have become vegan, we have not tried to make ru’ak with plant-based alternatives – until now!!! Now that we know where to find textured vegetable protein and how to use it, it’s a cinch!
Hold on to your taste buds, this is a delicious dish that even some of our meat-eating taste testers couldn’t tell was vegan! So, here goes…
This recipe is adapted from My Egyptian Grandmother’s Kitchen by Magda Mehdawy.
For the filling:
2 ½ cups of TVP
2 ¼ cups of water
2 large onions
1 tablespoon nondairy butter (samna nebety will work)
1 cup water
2 vegetable bouillon cubes, crumbled
2 tablespoons of soy sauce
1 teaspoon pepper
For the broth mix:
4 cups of water
1 vegetable bouillon cube
½ cup nondairy milk (we used soy)
salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup nondairy butter (or samna nebety)
½ kilo of rou’ak crackers (1 package)
Preheat the oven to 375 degree F (190 degrees C, or gas mark 5).
Prepare the TVP.
1. Soak the 2 ½ cups of dried TVP in 2 ¼ cups of water for about 5 minutes.
Prepare the filling.
2. Finely chop the onion and fry it in the nondairy butter (or samna nebety) until translucent.
3. Add the TVP and fry for a few minutes until the TVP starts to brown slightly.
4. Add the bouillon cubes, soy sauce and pepper. Cook about 2 minutes.
5. Add the 1 cup of water and continue frying until the water is absorbed.
Prepare the broth mix.
6. Heat the 4 cups of water and the bouillon cube. Add the nondairy milk, salt, pepper and only 2 tablespoons of nondairy butter.
Prepare the pie.
7. Melt the rest of the nondairy butter and coast the bottom of a circular pan.
8. Working one sheet of rou’ak at a time, place one sheet in the bottom of the pan. Pour a bit of the broth mix enough to wet the sheet. Sprinkle a bit of the melted nondairy butter on top.
9. Add another sheet. Pour a bit of broth mix. Sprinkle a bit of nondairy butter. Continue until you have used up half the package of rou’ak (about 5 sheets).
10. Spread the filling mix on top of the stacked sheets.
11. Top the filling with another sheet of rou’ak. Wet with the broth, sprinkle with the nondairy butter. Continue until you use all the sheets (about 5 more sheets).
12. When the pie is complete, sprinkle the top with some more melted nondairy butter.
13. Bake for about 30 minutes. Cut and serve. *It will be a bit difficult to cut smoothly, so take your time.
Nutrition Information (for 1 piece of 8 )
Calories: 435; Fat: 4 g; Cholesterol: 0 g; Carbohydrates: 70 g; Fiber: 9 g; Protein: 28 g