Well, my stories about my past drug adventures seem to be a big hit here on Veganize It...Don't Criticize It!. I don't want my readers under the impression that I'm some crazy drug fiend...I just happened to have some very wild teenage years. For the record, I've never even touched hard drugs. My personality is so addictive, that I know if I even did one line of coke I'd probably become addicted. This week's story is about a very unfortunate accident that happened when I was 16.
The night started out as a typical night of teenage shenanigans. My friend and I wanted to score a bag of weed, so we went over to our dealers house for a pick up. In true stoner etiquette, I offered to smoke a bowl of my newly acquired herb with the dealer. I go to use the restroom before we smoke, then come back and hit the bowl a few times.
My friend and I get into the car, and it's immediately apparent to me that something's not "all good, man". As I'm driving, I feel like I'm in a video game. My heart starts racing, the back of my head is pounding. My friend looks at my stunned face. "You OK, dude?", he asks. "No, dude. I'm FREAKING OUT!" He starts to laugh, then says "I think we just smoked crack". Another "Oh Shit" moment in my life.
I somehow manage to get my friend home, then drive back to my family's place and just lay down on the kitchen floor. All I could think about was the number 12 and how fast my heart was pacing. My mom eventually walks in and gives me one of those "I know you're on drugs" looks. She asks me if I'm ok, and I say "I'm fine". I laid on the kitchen floor for about another hour, then cleaned my room for the first time in months. It had never been so spotless. I now know much better than to abandon a bowl that I'm about to smoke. Sometimes we learn lessons the hard way.
Anyways, this recipe is based on one my Bubbee used to call one of her specialties: Chicken Fricassee. She would make it for me when I was a little kindelach, then my father took over making it after she passed. It's so great on a cold night when you want a dish that really sticks to your ribs. I know it's kind of addicting, but don't worry. No crack involved :)
- 20 small Pearl Onions or Shallots
- 1 TBSP Olive Oil
- 1 lb Okra, stems removed and cut into 1/4 inch pieces
- 2 batches of Vegan Chicken, cut into "Chicken" shaped pieces
- 3 TBSP Vegan Margarine
- 2 TBSP Sunflower Oil
- 3 TBSP All Purpose Flour
- 1 cup Dry White Wine
- 2 1/2 cups boiling No Chicken Broth
- 1 Bouquet Garni
- 1 tsp Lemon Juice
- 3 cups White Button Mushrooms
- 1/3 cup MimicCreme
- 3 TBSP Fresh Parsley, chopped
- Salt and Pepper, to taste
- Mashed Potatoes or Rice, for serving
Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. Place the Pearl Onions or Shallots in a large bowl, then pour boiling water over top of them so that they are completely submerged. Set aside to soak.
Heat the 1 TBSP of Olive Oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil is hot, add the Okra to the pan and saute for 10-15 minutes, until the "stickiness" diminishes. Set aside for later.
Melt 1 TBSP of the Vegan Margarine with the Sunflower Oil in a large frying pan. Add the "chicken" pieces and cook on high heat, turning occasionally, until lightly browned all over. Transfer the "chicken" pieces to a large casserole dish, leaving the pan juices behind on the stove.
Over medium-high heat, melt a 2nd TBSP of vegan margarine, then stir the flour into the pan juices and melted margarine. Add in the White Wine, and whisk to combine. Whisk in the boiling no chicken broth, bouquet garni and lemon juice. Stirring constantly, bring the mixture to a boil. Allow the mixture to boil until the sauce has thickened, then season with salt and pepper and pour over the "chicken". Cover the casserole dish with a lid, then place in the oven to cook for 1 hour.
Drain the Pearl Onions or Shallots well, then peel. Clean out the frying pan that you used for the "chicken", then add the remaining 1 TBSP of vegan margarine and heat until fully melted. Add the mushrooms and onions (or shallots) to the pan, and cook for 5 minutes, turning frequently, until the mushrooms and onions are lightly browned. Add the mushrooms, onions (or shallots) and okra to the casserole dish with the "chicken".
Cook for an additional hour until the vegan chicken is nice and tender. Using a slotted spoon, remove the "chicken" and veggies from the sauce and place them in a serving dish. Stir the MimicCreme and Fresh Parsley into the sauce, and whisk well to combine. Taste for salt and pepper. Pour the sauce back over the "chicken" and veggies, then garnish with more fresh parsley. Serve over mashed potatoes or rice.