The recipe was fairly simple to veganize:
1. Skip the pancetta and just add a tad bit more oil for cooking the onions to make up for the missing grease.
2. Substitute veggie broth for the chicken stock.
3. I had a leftover Chipotle Field Roast Sausage, so I diced that up and quickly browned it and set aside to fill in for the pancetta (not necessary, but I liked having something crunchy on top).
Ok, so I had so many tomatoes that I had to try the frying thing as well. Luckily, I remembered staring at this recipe for a month while my favorite vegan food blogger was working on getting her book out (more on that to come because I really like a few of the things from this book so far).
And to top that, I’ve been hearing so much about Gardein lately (I don’t eat a lot of faux meat, but thanks to the Oprah exposure, I had to give this a shot), that I went all vegan Paula Deen and fried up the faux chicken according to the Fried Green Tomatoes recipe.
So, now I had a meal fit for a
king Southern gentleman.
The highlight was definitely the fried green tomatoes (with a bit of balsamic reduction and served on some mixed greens from the farm) and the Gardein (the closest thing to real chicken texture that I’ve had) was a very close second.
Final Result: All of it was good. Damn good. Gluttonous good. Like I’ll likely not eat for the next 24 hours because I’m so full – well… except for the glass of chocolate Silk and the TCB chocolate chip cookie sitting next to me on the desk while I type this. But, seriously, 24 hours starting…….now.
*Green tomatoes are not tomatillos (something I do know how to cook being from Texas), but this soup has a consistency and taste similar to the tomatillo sauce you would put on enchiladas, tamales, chile rellenos, etc. That being the case, I’m planning on topping some vegan tamales with the leftovers tomorrow evening – nice bonus, I must say.