this week i’m focusing on fabulous faux meats. wait! don’t go! by now you too must have tried a veggie-burger that you actually liked. or maybe gone to a vegan chinese restaurant and had oddly realistic mock beef with black bean sauce. i think for every 5 mediocre or plain bland/bad soy, tempeh or gluten mock meat product found in large grocery stores (in urban areas), there is at least one pretty awesome one now. they are NOT all created equal. i think tofurkey sausages are truly delicious but i don’t like any of the other brands i’ve tried. and now there are these “chicken” breasts made by “it’s all good” and now president’s choice has a similar meatless chicken breast product. so if you’re not a meat-eater or trying to scale back your consumption, try one of the newer mock meat products and you might be pleasantly surprised.
i don’t eat mock meat that often because i try to avoid processed foods and processed, these are. but there are a few recipes i make time and again that really call for them. a vegetable substitute (say, a portobello mushroom) doesn’t create the same result. i use tofurkey sausages to make a meatless version of sausage and peppers, and i tweaked that by using chicken breasts and adding a white wine sauce and was really happy with the outcome. this is a great cold-weather dish that i come back a couple of times each winter.
“chicken” and peppers in tomato white wine sauce
4 mock chicken breasts
2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
1/2 red onion, sliced
1 cup green beans, sliced diagonally in 1-inch pieces
2 hot banana peppers, seeded, deveined and sliced diagonally in 1-inch wide strips
1 tsp dried thyme
2 dried bay leaves
1/2 cup dry white wine
1 tbs tomato paste
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. add onion, peppers and beans and fry for 1 minute, then add salt, pepper, thyme and bay leaves. continue to saute until the vegetables are cooked through and brown slightly. transfer mixture to a plate. return skillet to heat and add remaining oil. add “chicken” breasts to the skillet and brown for two minutes on each side. add wine to skillet and deglaze the bottom of the pan. add tomato paste and dissolve into wine. add vegetables back to the pan and stir through. simmer or a minute or two. serve hot, over rice.