Cinco De Mayo: Torta De Bandera

Note: Today’s recipe was created in conjunction with one of my favorite companies, Follow Your Heart. I did not receive payment of any kind (other than vouchers for products used) and endorse their company because it’s something I like! Their link for the (same) recipe on their site can be found here: Vegicano’s Vegan Torta De Bandera! 

Contrary to what some may believe, Cinco De Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day. Instead, it is embraced by many in America as a day celebrating both Mexican history and heritage; commemorating the defeat of the French in the ‘Battle of Puebla” in 1862.

But, alas, this isn’t intended to be a history lesson nor am I trying to show off my sick high school essay writing skills brah. I’m here to cook something bien rico for Cinco de Mayo! (And, more to the point – Eat!)

Today’s recipe is a celebration of many things, not only the colors of the Mexican Flag (hence the recipe’s name: Torta de Bandera) but also a prevailing French influence found in the sandwich (the bread) all the while utilizing some of my favorite vegan ingredients.

It’s a win-win-win for everybody! (Well, except for the person who has to do the dishes).

This Torta comes together rather simply; each of the fillings (while they do require their own preparation) are relatively simple cook up. All gets placed on a toasted sandwich roll, its paired with Vegenaise, Mashed avocado (because, y’know, avocado) and Provolone Style Slices for that little something extra.

Torta De Bandera: Mexican Flag Sandwich

4 Bolillos, Portuguese Roll or your favorite Sandwich Roll​
Sauteed Kale (Recipe Follows)
Seasoned Tofu Scramble (Recipe Follows)
Soyrizo (Recipe Follows)
Vegenaise (to dress your sandwich)
Follow Your Heart Provolone Slices
Mashed Avocado (Mashed Avocado + Splash of Lime Juice + Pinch of salt)

Filling #1 Sauteed Kale (The Green)

1 lb of Kale (washed/ stems trimmed) or 10 oz package of (prepared – cleaned / trimmed) Kale.
1 TBS Olive Oil (Canola is fine)
1 Clove of garlic (finely minced)
1/2 Cup (low sodium) Vegetable Broth or water
1 TBS Soy Sauce
1 (heap) tsp nutritional yeast
1/4 tsp black pepper
Splash of red wine vinegar or lemon/lime juice
Salt to taste

1. Heat olive oil over medium high heat in a Saute Pan (with lid).
2. Add your minced garlic and saute for 2 minutes.
3. While that’s cooking fork-whisk remaining ingredients (Broth through red wine vinegar) in a measuring cup and set aside.
4. Add your Kale and saute for about a minute. Add your broth mixture and stir to incorporate.
5. Cover and cook until all the liquid has evaporated, stirring intermittently (about 5 minutes).

Filling #2 Seasoned Tofu (The White)

1 package of firm tofu – drained
2 TBS Soy Sauce
1 TBS Vegenaise
1 TBS Almond Milk (or non-dairy milk)
1 Heaping TBS of Nutritional Yeast
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp onion powder
salt to taste

1. Break up (drained) tofu with your hands (in smallish pieces) into a medium sized bowl.
2. Add the rest of your ingredients to the tofu.
3. Using a rubber spatula incorporate all of the ingredients thoroughly.
4. Taste your tofu. Adjust your salt level.
5. Heat 1 TBS of Canola Oil in a skillet or rimmed pan. Add your tofu and cook until heated throughout.

Filling #3 Soyrizo (The Red)

12 oz of Soyrizo (casing removed and broken up)
1 tsp Canola Oil
1 tsp of nutritional yeast
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 (heap) tsp of ketchup
1/4 cup of vegetable broth (or water)

1. Heat 1 tsp canola oil in a Medium Saute Pan.
2. Remove Soyrizo from (plastic) casing, break it up and add to your pan.
3. Cook for a few minutes; you’ll want your soyrizo to brown a bit.
4. Add your ketchup, nutritional yeast, garlic powder and vegetable broth. Stir to incorporate.
5. Lower heat to medium and allow the liquid to cook off – Salt to taste.

To Assemble Your Torta de Bandera:

1. Split your sandwich roll using a serrated knife.
2. Lightly toast your (split) sandwich roll
3. Add Vegenaise to each side of the roll.
4. To the bottom bun, add your sliced cheese then layer from the bottom up: Soyrizo, Seasoned Tofu, Sauteed Kale and Mashed Avocado.

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