Disclaimer. This is not lox. But, it’s something! I am calling it lox because that is what it looks like and it is an all natural, unprocessed, fun vegan facsimile for something to put on a bagel with cream cheese.
I never really liked lox growing up but it was around so there is some sort of comfort feeling when I see my little pile of carrot lox atop my bagel and Kite Hill cream cheese at my family brunch.
I’ve never seen or had carrot lox but read about it in this article on Toronto Life. I thought it was such a great idea, but being a home cook, I don’t have the volume nor the equipment as the guy in the article has, so I had to come up with my own version.
My first thought was that I wanted thin slices because any other cut would be too much. I don’t have a mandolin – too dangerous for me – so I decided to use my vegetable peeler to make thin slices like ribbons. I marinated them in a combo of smoked salt, coconut sugar and freshly ground black pepper (just like in the article) and then steam-roasted them in aquafaba (magical bean water!) for 25 minutes.
Voila! Carrot lox. After steam-roasting, the carrots become soft and glossy. The flavor is kind of peppery and smoky. This lox is kind of perfect and slightly addicting. It’s so easy to make, it tastes great, and let’s face it, it photographs really well!
Makes enough to pile high atop 6 bagel halves.
2 large carrots
1 teaspoon smoked salt
1 teaspoon coconut sugar
1/2 teaspoon fresh black pepper
6 tablespoons aquafaba
Cut the ends off the carrots and peel the outer layer. Discard. Use the peeler to make nice, long slices. Turn the carrot after a few peels and peel again. Turn again and peel and turn again and peel. It will appear to have 4 sides. Keep peeling as the slices get nice and wide. There will about 2 cups of carrots at this point. You don’t need to go all the way. Save for a salad later.
Sprinkle with salt, sugar and pepper. Toss and place in a glass container with a lid and marinate in the refrigerator for 24 hours.
Take out of the refrigerator and bring to room temperature. Pour into a strainer to drain any excess water.
Preheat the oven to 350.
Whisk the aquafaba until foamy. Add the carrots and use a fork to mix around and coat all of the carrot slices.
Set a piece of foil on a baking dish and carefully pour the carrots and the liquid onto the foil. Fold it up into a tight packet and bake for 25 minutes.
Take the carrots out and let them steam in the packet for another 5 minutes. Open the package and place the carrot lox into a container. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use. Serve with bagels, toast or crackers. And of course vegan cream cheese. Dill, capers, and red onions work too. Enjoy!