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Recipe: Vitaliz Haystacks

Chef Nina Curtis Recipes, Body, Show on Corporate Home

Vitaliz Haystacks are an elevated offering of the traditional Adventist haystacks, known and loved by a global community and eaten and shared with family and friends alike. This easy-to-assemble and flavorful dish is often eaten at celebratory gatherings, after church services and at potluck dinners.

Traditionally stacked with corn chips, black beans, cheese, lettuce, diced tomatoes or pico de gallo, olives, sour cream, scallions and pickled jalapenos, there’s no limit to the number of plant-based ingredients that can be used.

The Vitaliz Café, which serves associates at the Adventist Health Roseville office, launched the Vitaliz Haystack as an homage to this traditional Seventh-day Adventist dish and it’s been a success ever since.

Vitaliz Haystacks

Yield: Approximately 4 servings

  • 2 cups cooked organic black rice, served warm
  • 2 cups cooked organic black beans seasoned to taste with sea salt and black pepper, served hot
  • 2 cups shredded organic romaine lettuce
  • 1 cup of Violife grated ‘Cheddar Cheese’ (This is a plant-based cheese) or your favorite cheddar cheese
  • Follow Your Heart dairy-free sour cream (or sour cream of your choice)
  • 1 cup fresh off-the-cob organic corn kernels (approximately two ears of corn)
  • ¾ cup small diced red bell peppers
  • ¼ cup sliced black olives
  • ¼ cup plus teaspoons thinly sliced scallions
  • Lentil walnut “meat” (recipe below)
  • Pico de gallo (recipe below)
  • Chipotle aioli (recipe below)

Lentil walnut “meat”

  • 1 cup cooked organic lentils: Make sure the lentils are cooked just to tender and are not too soft
  • 1 cup toasted organic walnuts
  • ¼ cup rice bran oil
  • 2 teaspoons smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoons sea salt (adjust to taste)

In a food processor, pulse the lentils and walnuts a couple of times until you create a crumble consistency. Pour the lentil and walnut contents into a medium-size bowl and add all listed seasonings and oil. Mix until the mixture resembles ‘ground beef’ and ingredients are well combined. Just before you are ready to plate, heat the lentil walnut ‘meat’ in a large skillet, as you would ground beef. Serve on the Vitaliz Haystack hot.

Pico de Gallo

  • 2 cups small diced organic tomatoes, de-seeded
  • 3/4 cup small diced organic red onion
  • ½ cup roughly chopped organic cilantro
  • ¼ cup lime juice
  • ½ teaspoons sea salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper

Place all the ingredients in a small size bowl and toss together. Set aside.

Chipotle Aioli

  • 2 cups Follow Your Heart non-soy vegenaise
  • 2 large dried chipotle peppers, reconstituted; Once reconstituted, remove the seeds to tame the heat
  • ¼ cup organic apple cider vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon sea salt

Place the two chipotle peppers and two cups of vegenaise (or your choice of mayonnaise) in a blender. Add apple cider vinegar and sea salt and blend to a smooth consistency. Place aioli in a squeeze bottle. Set aside.

Assembling and plating your haystack

Toss together corn kernels and red bell peppers in a small size bowl and salt to taste. Set aside.

To plate: Place ½ cup of black rice in the center of the plate. Next, layer ½ cup black beans on top of the rice. Follow by continuing to stack ¼ cup of lentil walnut meat, ¼ cup ‘cheddar cheese,’ ½ cup shredded romaine lettuce, ¼ cup corn and red bell peppers, ¼ cup pico de gallo, 1 tablespoon Follow Your Heart sour cream, 1 teaspoon black olives, 1 teaspoon scallions and drizzle with Chipotle aioli.

Place a teaspoon of your favorite brand of pickled jalapeño on the side of the haystack along with a few tortilla chips around the haystack. Enjoy!

About the author: Chef Nina Curtis is the director and executive chef at Adventist Health’s Vitaliz Café in Roseville, California. Follow her @botanicalchef on social media. Read more about her award-winning Vitaliz Haystack