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Monday, October 12, 2015

Tomato etouffee' over cheesy grits


Tomato etouffee' over cheesy grits

This recipe came about by request from my friend Julie.  She sent me a picture of a meal at a restaurant and asked if I could re-invent it.  Well, It took a few weeks to get to it, mainly because I was waiting for exact ingredients.  My produce man was not able to provide those items, so I came up with an original.
Now, this recipe is not something you can just throw together.  It will require some work and some planning.  The smoked mushrooms take several hours to make.  So this will be a recipe you make on a Sunday afternoon, or when you have company come over.  But I promise you this, it will taste amazing and it will impress anyone you serve it to.  
Take your time and put lots of love into this recipe.  It is fun to slow down and make a masterpiece from scratch.  
This recipe will be broken down into parts.  You can do them all around the same time, but this recipe has many parts and breaking it down is easier.  So lets start with the ingredient lists.

Here is the recipe for the smoked mushrooms

For the salsa fresca:

6-8 roma tomatoes, cleaned and cut into 1/2 inch pieces 
1 yellow onion, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch pieces
1/4c chopped cilantro
salt and pepper 
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped

Combine all ingredients into a bowl and mix well.  Cover and put into fridge.

For the greens:

1 large bunch of collard greens, cleaned well, stripped from large veins, and chopped into 1 inch pieces 
1/2c veggie stock
salt and pepper to taste
2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
1 tsp. onion powder

In a medium saute pan, combine the veggie stock and spices and bring to a simmer over medium high heat.  Add the collard greens and cover.  Cook for 10-15 minutes, stirring one time during cooking.

While the greens are cooking, lets start on the tomato etoufee'

Tomato etouffee' with mushrooms and white beans

1 14.5 oz. can of crushed tomatoes
1 14.5 oz. can of Rotel (tomatoes and green chilies)
8 oz. button mushrooms, cleaned and sliced into 1/2 inch thick slices
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and chopped small
3 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped fine
1/2c veggie broth
2 bay leaves 
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon Cajun spice
2 teaspoons paprika 
1 can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed

In a large saute pan, combine the onions and garlic.  Saute over medium high for 5 minutes, until they start to soften.  Add the flour and mix in, stirring constantly for about a minute.  Add the veggie broth and stir until the flour is dissolved into the liquid.
Add the spices and stir well.
Add the can of tomato, Rotel, mushrooms and beans.  Stir well, and simmer for 10-15 minutes.  Stir often to avoid anything sticking to the bottom.  Turn to low after 15 minutes and let stay warm.

Finally, lets make the grits!

4c good veggie stock
1c dry grits
1/4c plant milk
1/4c nutritional yeast
salt and pepper to taste

In a large pan, combine the stock and milk.  Bring to a boil.  Add the grits slowly, whisking as you add to avoid lumps.  Bring back to the boil and reduce the heat to medium.  Cook for 10 minutes or longer, to get smooth and creamy grits.  Stir often.  When you remove from heat, add the nutritional yeast and salt/pepper.  Stir well.

Now, assemble everything.

In a serving bowl or large plate, put a base of grits.  Place some of the greens, some of the etouffee', smoked mushrooms and the salsa fresca on top.  (see illustration for example)
Serve hot and a dash or two of good hot sauce.
Lots of parts to this dish, but worth every bit of effort you put into it. :)









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