Sweet Vegan Pumpkin Knodel

This is what happens when an Austrian woman insists I take home a dozen old rolls found in the church freezer (I got lucky, there were at least 50 in there!). She told me she was using hers to make knodel. I thought I might throw mine away…but I didn’t. But I did leave them sitting out on the counter for almost a week in nothing but a plastic shopping bag. They got nice and stale.

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So I thought, What the heck? Maybe I’ll try knodel. You need about 1 pound of stale bread,

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cut into cubes and place in a large bowl.

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Now heat 1 C milk of your choice – since we’re in the holiday season, I used this vegan nog. Heat it over medium until it begins to bubble around the edges.

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Pour the warm milk over the bread cubes and gently stir to coat. Let the bread soak for 15 minutes, meanwhile…

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Over low medium heat, melt 2 Tbsp of margarine and add to it 1/2 C pumpkin puree.

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Stir the margarine into the pumpkin, then season pumpkin with 1 tsp gray salt, 1/4 tsp cinnamon, and a couple dashes of nutmeg.

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Stir in 1 to 2 Tbsp maple syrup. Remove from heat.

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Now, back to the bread. Add equivalent of two eggs – I used chia eggs. Stir it up.

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Next add the pumpkin.

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Stir. I let it soak another 15 minutes. While it’s soaking, boil a big pot of water. The water should be about 3 inches deep.

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Not the fun part – squish the mixture with your hands. Squish, squish, squish until a kind of a sticky mess forms. It’s supposed to be like dough, but mine was just a sticky mess! If it seems too wet, you may want to add some bread crumbs. I did.

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With wet hands, form the dough/sticky mess into balls about the size of a tangerine. Carefully drop the balls into the boiling water.

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Lower heat to a simmer, and let the dumplings simmer for 20 minutes.

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Using a slotted spoon, remove the dumplings from the water to a serving plate.

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Drizzle with maple syrup, or sprinkle the dumplings with sugar.

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I used maple sugar on mine, they were great!

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Sticky on the outside, moist and dense on the inside. Yum yum yum. A nice alternative to Thanksgiving stuffing!

Pumpkin Knodel
1 lb stale bread, cubed
1 C non-dairy milk (or nog! a sweet flavor is best)
2 Tbsp margarine
1/2 C pumpkin puree
2 chia eggs*
1 tsp gray salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
dash or two of nutmeg

*For my chia eggs, I combined 4 tsp chia seeds with about 6 Tbsps water and let it set until a gel formed. I didn’t have chia seed meal, I used whole seeds.

Lenten gruel #2, pumpkin

Today is day two of my Lenten gruel extravaganza. I had an old can of pumpkin sitting around, so I decided to go with it. I started this one almost the same as yesterday’s, by boiling about 1 cup of onions in 1 cup of water until they were clear, but I also added 1 clove of garlic, chopped.


If you want to see onions boiling, take a look at the original gruel recipe.

Next I added 1/2 cup canned pumpkin. I ended up adding a whole other cup of water because the pumpkin made the gruel so thick, and I hadn’t even added my oat flour yet.

I think I ended up adding about 1/8 cup oat flour, and 15-20 shakes of salt.  I dunno, something about the canned flavor, it needed some sprucing up…but I’m trying to stick to my original plan of nothing remotely fancy.

After I gave it a taste, I wished I could add some sort of fat. On an oil free day, like today, I would normally turn to tahini or coconut milk for that, but…I don’t think tahini would improve the flavor, and I didn’t have any coconut milk. Plus I wouldn’t want it to be sweet. So, I went for fillers instead.

These plain old, extra plain, non-flavored Kavli Crisp Breads! So tasty, like dipping cardboard in my gruel! Haha. It’s definitely better when I eat them with a spread.

While I was eating the first bowl, I realized the best thing in the world for this gruel would be to blend or process it. Eating a big chunk of onion didn’t do anything for the pumpkin flavor, but once I started chewing it was…different. In a good way. But I won’t be able to experiment with that tomorrow because I’ll be moving on to another flavor!