Tuesday, April 12, 2011

TVP Taco "Meat", Fry Bread, Curry Corn Soup

I've got three good recipes that our family has tried lately.  All three were big hits and definitely will get made over and over again.

A quick word about TVP: I looked up Textured Vegetable Protein on the internet after seeing it listed in many vegan recipes.  I wasn't sure what it was or where to find it, but actually found it by accident in my small town Fareway store.  It was with the health/gluten-free products. It is made from reduced fat soy beans and is used as a replacer or extender for ground meats.  It has a crumbly texture when dry, but the texture of ground beef when hydrated.  And has as high a protein content as any meat. It is quick and easy to rehydrate (let sit for 5 minutes in boiled water), and since it's soy, it really has no flavor.  Therefore, it just takes on the taste and seasonings of the dish.  I used it for taco "meat" and filled enchiladas with it.  My family and my daycare kids loved it.  I ended up making another double batch to portion out for the freezer.  I've also eaten it in chili (Eli loved it!) and see that it can be used in a lot of recipes. I've seen recipes for meatloaf, cabbage casseroles, etc.  Anyway, here's the link to the brand I used.  I recommend it.  http://www.bobsredmill.com/tvp-textured-veg._protein.html

I ate it just like the picture, only with a couple spoonfuls of my favorite hot salsa on top.  I also made it into enchiladas and baked them in the oven.  That night I served the kids first, and by the time Buzz and I got to the table they were both asking for more.  Neither one ever asked for cheese or sour cream on top.  It was good with just a bit of enchilada sauce.

TVP TACO "MEAT"
1 1/4 c. boiling water
1 c. TVP
1 can refried bean (vegetarian)
1 can black beans (drained and rinsed)
1 pkg taco seasoning
2 T. tomato paste

Boil the water in a pot or sauce pan.  Add all ingredients and stir well.  Cook and stir over medium low heat for 5 minutes.  Use in tacos, enchiladas, burritos, etc.

We needed a carb last night, and I wanted something other than pasta or rice.  This bread was a big hit. We served it plain with sauteed spinach and white beans (with red peppers, onion, garlic, olive oil and white balsamic to season).  I also tried it dusted with cinnamon and sugar.  Good stuff.

FRY BREAD
3 c. all-purpose flour
2 t. baking powder
1 t. salt
1 c. warm water
oil for frying

Mix flour, baking powder and salt together. Pour int he warm water and mix, then knead until soft and not sticky.  Add more water or flour as needed to make it soft.
Place dough in a bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit 15 minutes. Divide the dough into 12 equally sized balls.  Flatten or roll to about 5 inch circles and poke a hole in the middle of each.
Fry in hot oil (375 degrees) a minute or so on each side until golden.
Serve with honey, jam, or use in place of tortillas or pita bread.

I was hesitant to feed curry soup to my family and daycare kids, but they loved this one, too.  And the best part was it took about 10 minutes total.  Serve it up with some fried potatoes or jasmine rice and fresh fruit. I added some peas and carrots to the soup for the daycare kids.  Anything to get those veggies!

CURRY CORN SOUP
1 T. olive oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
4 to 5 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
1 medium red bell pepper, chopped
3 1/2 c. coconut milk (I used Silk--find it with other milk)
16-ounce bag frozen corn
2 t. curry powder
¼ t. Thai red curry paste (optional, use as you like)
1 t. salt, or to taste
½ c. minced fresh cilantro

Heat the oil in a small soup pot. Add the garlic, the white parts of the scallions, and the bell pepper. Sauté over medium-low heat until softened and golden, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the coconut milk, corn, curry powder, the green parts of the scallions. If using the curry paste, dissolve it in a small amount of water before adding to the soup.
Bring to a rapid simmer, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for 5 minutes. Season with salt and remove from the heat.
Top with cilantro and serve.

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