March 31, 2016

Beef(less) Mushroom Stroganoff

Sorry I've been slow to update the site, but I've got an exciting excuse! I used some of my tax return money to enroll in the Forks Over Knives cooking course, and it's been keeping me busy during my tiny bits of "computer time" each day. Next year I'm really hoping to enroll in the Plant-Based Professional course, and become a bona fide vegan chef. Maybe start earning money with my cooking? Yes, please! I'll keep you guys updated on my progress.

In the meantime, I'll post as often as I can. The FOK course ends in May, so I should be posting with more regularity by summer. Hang in there!

I was craving something classic, hearty, and old-school, so I pulled down the only non-vegan cookbook I own, which is called Jeanne Jones' Homestyle Cooking Made Healthy: 200 Classic American Favorites Low in Fat With All the Original Flavor. I freakin' love this cookbook. It's got all the classic American staples in it, and they're all sort of semi low fat, not that anyone cares about fat anymore, but if you could see the adorable photo of the author, a tiny little ol' lady named Jeanne, you'd fall in love like I did.

So, I cracked it open to a classic Beef Stroganoff recipe, and I veganized that bee. So, here's my version of Beef(less) Mushroom Stroganoff, adapted from the Jeanne Jones cookbook referenced above.

12 or 16 ounce bag of any wide, flat noodles
3 tablespoons oil or vegan butter
1 little carton of mushrooms, cut into quarters
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
2 bags of Gardein Beefless Tips*
2 1/2 tablespoons unbleached all purpose flour
2 1/2 cups vegetable or no-beef broth
3 tablespoons marsala wine ($3.99 for a huge bottle at Trader Joe's!)
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon dried basil
3/4 cup vegan sour cream
Salt and pepper, to taste
Fresh parsley, finely chopped (to garnish)
*If you can't swing the cost of Gardein, sub two extra cartons of mushrooms.
  • Pre-cook your noodles in a large pot according to package directions, drain them, shock them by running cold water over them until they're totally cool, then put them back in the big pot and set them aside.
  • In a large, nonstick skillet, heat two tablespoons of the oil or butter over medium-high heat. Add garlic and onions and saute until just beginning to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Add your mushrooms. Cook them only a few minutes more, stirring frequently, until they are just beginning to soften. Remove from skillet and set aside.
  • Heat the remaining tablespoon of oil or butter in the same hot skillet. Brown the outsides of your Gardein Beefless Tips, if using. When you're finished, dump the Gardein into the same bowl you have your onions, garlic and mushrooms in. 
  • In your same hot skillet, brown with goo from cooking (which is exactly what you want), place your flour. Slowly stir in the broth, whisking constantly, until the flour isn't clumped. Heat should be medium. Whisk in the wine, tomato paste, paprika, dried basil, and a few shakes of salt and pepper. Reduce heat to simmer and stir occasionally, until mixture thickens slightly. 
  • Turn off the heat and add the sour cream.
  • Pour the sauce into the large pot containing your pre-cooked noodles. Add the beefless tips (if using), mushrooms and garlic. Gently stir and mix everything together until all the noodles are coated with the sauce and the mushrooms and beefless tips are spread throughout.
  • When you serve the dish, top it with some fresh, finely chopped parsley. It's easy to grow, so you shouldn't have to buy it, but if you do have to buy it, it's cheap. And it's a showstopper that really elevates the look of the dish and freshens it up on your palate.
  • This makes about four really big servings, or eight small to reasonable-sized servings. We Texans like huge servings, so it's always hard for me to make a calculation on these things.
  • Enjoy!

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