As usual, I'm different. My idea of comfort food doesn't usually comport with what most people typically want as comfort food. For me, I prefer a food that will nourish and heal... something that will heal my body, not just numb the mind when hurting. Many others associate comfort food with decadence. Things like super creamy mac & Gary, mashed potatoes with tons of gravy, cakes, donuts.... things of that nature. That's ok too, as long as it's vegan, it's on my plate at some point or another. I don't use bad times as an excuse to indulge in things that aren't the best choices for me. So, I bring you 2 comfort foods today... mine (detox "yoga" soup) and everyone else's (chik'n & dumplings--yes, damn good).
As I explain in the video, when I had some very intense pastry chef training a few years ago, I was feeling very unwell by about day 3. My instructor said "I know what you need! You need a detox or miso soup!" So, that's what I made for us, and magically we both felt so much better after we ate. As I also explain, I don't eat a lot of sugar (um, can we please forget about last night's "midnight snacking video") but I still ingest it through absorbing it through my skin as I work, as well as inhaling it during work (things I'd never considered until I went to see a healer for so many problems I was having). I'm a baker. I spend countless hours working with the sweet stuff. It causes inflammation in my body, and sluggishness in my brain. I got sick of feeling sick, and eliminating sugar helps me. This detox "yoga" soup is delicious and comes together in about 5 minutes. If you scroll down past the video, you'll see a list of suggested ingredients and a method for each. The other soup is a "chik'n & biscuit" style dish. It's super easy, and dirt cheap if you make your own seitan. It's hearty, creamy, warming. Actually it's a hug in a bowl.
Let's check them out:
Chik'n & Biscuits
4-6 cups veg stock, veg bouillon or un-chik'n bouillon
Choice of veggies, diced (I used carrots, onion, potato, edamame, corn)
seitan of choice (I made my own, method below)
your favorite biscuit recipe (I made my own, method below)
Seasonings of choice (I used sage, poultry seasoning, thyme and black pepper)
Bring water/stock to boil, turn heat to med. low, add veggies. Cook about 5-10 minutes, then add seitan (I shredded mine), keep on low about another 5 minutes. Mix up your biscuits (I mixed 1 cup flour, 2.5 tsp. baking powder, sage, thyme, black pepper; cut in 2.5 tablespoons vegan margarine, then mixed in about 1/2 cup non-dairy milk). When ready, spoon the biscuit mix on top of the soup/stew in blobs. Cover, keep on low about 7 minutes, uncover, check biscuits for doneness, should be ready to eat. Ladle into bowls. Prepare to receive compliments and hugs.
I used about 1/2 bag of gluten I had leftover from something else, dumped in a bowl, sprinkled in some chickpea flour, poultry seasoning, and whisked well. Added in water until it became not too wet, not too dry, pulled to mix well, and shaped into logs. Slice. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of seasoned water to boil (use what you want: veg bouillon, poultry seasoning, sage, thyme, whatever.... if you don't season this enough, your seitan will be a little bland, but that's still ok, it's going to take on flavors of whatever recipe you use it in). Add uncooked seitan to boiling pot of magically seasoned water. Turn heat to medium low, cook 1/2 hour, stirring and pushing down occasionally (cook covered), then for about another 15 minutes or so, cook uncovered. Let cool. Use what you need, freeze or refrigerate the rest. Keep your leftover seitan in some of the stock water so it doesn't dry out. (Do I hear buffalo style seitan calling you????)
Jen's Detox "Yoga" Soup
About 4 cups water
Bragg's liquid aminos
Ginger, powdered or sliced, whatever you want.... amount to taste. I used a decent amount!
Mushrooms, washed & sliced.... MANY!
rice noodles or whatever you call those Asian noodles that you add to stuff after finished cooking, they're magic, you don't cook them, they're like little threads
You can add: miso (always add miso after done cooking, never boil miso), dark greens, tiny bits of tofu, broccoli, things like that. Whatever you want.
Serve with diced scallions, seeds on top, any type of hot sauce.
This is MY idea of comfort food.... it resets my body when it's far too overloaded with crap, especially sugar.
Hope you like the video and food.... cooking should be from the heart, more experimental than rigid. Use what you have on hand, and just go for it.