Oh, hey Vegan Mofo people. So I was warning folks earlier this week that most food I’ve cooked lately has come in bowls. And I wasn’t even kidding. The top rack of my dishwasher is full of bowls and there are two plates in the bottom part. Ridiculous. But something about the turn to Fall makes me immediately start craving soups and stews. And it isn’t even really cool yet. It’s just no longer unbearably hot. Which is a good thing.
There are a few beefy type stews I enjoy making. This happens to be the one from Vegan Vittles, the Chuckwagon Stew. Instead of the tempeh, I used about a half a cup or so of dehydrated faux beef chunks and just tossed them in and let them rehydrate in the stew. I also tossed about a half a cup of frozen peas in towards the end of cooking for extra vegetabular goodness.
Some cookbooks are pretty straight forward and just give you the recipes with minimal commentary. And then some almost read like a memoir. Passionate Vegetarian is the latter. The whole book, 1000+ pages, is sprinkled with stories about food and the author’s life. It’s also a “joy of cooking” type of book where sections like “great grains” show you different things to do with quinoa, kamut, etc. I like these sorts of cookbooks for when you run across something a little unusual and want ideas on how to use it. While the book isn’t vegan, there are plenty of vegan or veganizable recipes. And the recipes are interesting, not the same old thing.
This past week, I pulled out this book and decided to make West Indian Rundown. Instead of using seitan, I substituted beef style TVP. I didn’t even bother to rehydrate it, just chucked it in the stew. We just ate it over brown rice. It made a ton and I ended up eating it all week for lunch. It was as good as I’ve had at a Caribbean restaurant, but it doesn’t photograph that well.
Wow, the Puréed Spicy Sweet Potato & Peanut Stew with Chickpeas from Dreen Burton’s Eat, Drink & Be Vegan is so tasty! Sweet, spicy and just a hint of peanut to it. The chickpeas I used were some dark colored dried ones I picked up at the Indian grocery. When cooked up they seem to hold their shape really well without being hard at all. Kind of lentil-like that way. The recipe makes a ton, so I froze a bucket and have still been eating off of it this week. I love it when healthy tastes great! Also, if you’re watching pennies, this is pretty cheap to make.
I thought yesterday morning was cold. Especially when Grover escaped as I was letting when I let Tak out for her first pee. Chasing him around the yard for ten minutes all bleary eyed at 5:30am was not much fun. He runs, he meows, he runs some more. I think he finally let me catch him when he realized he was cold. It’s a good think he’s a handsome cat. See?
On to food. If you haven’t made the Cholent from Veganomicon, this is the perfect time for it. After chasing Mr. Short Bus cat around the yard, I swear I would have eaten this for breakfast if I’d had any left. So warming and satisfying. The tvp chunks have the perfect chew to them. It’s like the stew my mom made growing up without all the death. Hell, next time I might even make it with biscuits on top like she did if I don’t make it into a pot pie form.