For VeganMoFo Day 3, here’s a post I wrote two years ago but never published. As the French say, plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.
October has been a bit of a blur, and a lot of my meals have been on the fly. Last week I made a pot of vegan chili and ate chili for five nights straight–chili over polenta, improvised tamale pie with chili, polenta, and Daiya Cheddar Style Shreds, and chili in a bowl straight-up, with toast for dipping.
This week, my spouse is away and given that my child pretty much eschews everything I cook, I’m cooking for myself. I had to quell an initial impulse to eat nothing but Earth Balance Vegan Aged Cheddar Flavor Puffs for dinner. Despite being fired up after attending the inaugural Triangle VegFest and sampling many a tasty vegan item, I haven’t had the time or motivation to do much cooking this week. Fortunately, this recipe for Grits Casserole posted by Triangle Chance for All, a microsanctuary in the heart of North Carolina, scrolled by on my Facebook feed. I didn’t have any corn on hand (used it all in the chili), but I did have an assortment of half-used items–half a box of sliced mushrooms, half a box of baby spinach, a quarter of a pack of Daiya cheddar shreds, three-quarters of a package of my favorite analog, Field Roast Smoked Apple Sage vegan sausages. And polenta. Only here, it’s called grits. Either way, it’s not just for breakfast. And few things give me greater please on a chilly fall evening than breakfast for dinner. I cooked the Field Roast sausages and mushrooms on the stovetop and the grits in the rice cooker (no need to watch the pot), stirring the spinach and vegan cheese shreds into the hot grits when they were done.
If you’ve read my previous posts, you’ve probably gleaned that I don’t stand too much on recipes, either following them to the letter or carrying them through to completion. It was a Monday night, after all, and transferring already cooked ingredients to a casserole dish to cook for another 20 minutes in the oven seemed excessive for a weeknight. So I dished out a bowl of the hearty, flavorful grits mixture for immediate consumption and spooned the rest into a little 4×6 casserole for reheating the following day. The grits/polenta firmed up overnight, and day two’s leftovers neatly fit into a single serving casserole dish for lunch the third day–comfort to go.
This looks great! I quite like it when the pressure’s off and I’m only cooking for myself, that’s the only time when I’m less prepared and more willing to just throw things together.