Thursday, June 5, 2014
Smoky Chipotle Sloppy Joes
Growing up, I was totally a wanna-be chef. I would hold fake cooking shows for my little sister while making rice-a-roni from a box, haphazardly adding random spices from the cabinet with no conception of what they added to the dish. But we had fun. I remember one day my best friend and I decided to make Sloppy Joes from scratch while watching Boy Meets World, my watchful little sister in tow. It was the summer, and she and I spent most of our days running our very serious, extremely lucrative lemonade stand, which all profits went to our candy fund. It was only natural that we eventually took to the kitchen. Those Sloppy Joes were one of the first things I made from scratch that I was pretty proud of and for that reason, I get incredibly nostalgic just thinking about them. You can lose those memories when you change your diet. But sometimes I'm really amazed when dishes that are so utterly NOT vegan can be veganized into a nearly perfect replica. Sloppy Joes are one of those things.
Not everything in life has to be healthy, and these are not. I'm heavy-handed with the oil, and it's chalk full of faux meat products. But sometimes in life you have to allow yourself these little indulgences. Otherwise, you'll lose your mind.
Smoky Chipotle Sloppy Joes
Serves 2-4 people, pending appetite assessment
5 tbsp olive oil
1/2 of a yellow onion finely chopped
1 tsp minced garlic (about 1-2 cloves)
1 Field Roast Chipotle Sausage, quartered and chopped into small pieces (this sausage gives most of the flavor!)
1 cup Boca soy crumbles, or whichever brand you like
About half of a 12oz can plain tomato sauce
1 large dried chipotle pepper, or 2 small
1 bay leaf
Cayenne pepper to taste (I use about 1 tsp)
Salt & pepper to taste
4 whole wheat slider buns
* In a pan, heat up your olive oil (or canola, whichever) on medium heat. When heated, add your chopped chipotle sausage and cook for about 5 minutes, allowing it to brown and get crispy. Make sure you check on it periodically and move it around.
* Lower your heat a little and add your onions, cooking covered for another 5 minutes, until softened. Again, keep it moving to prevent burning.
* Add your soy crumbles, and mix together for another couple minutes until heated through.
* Lower your heat again and add you tomato sauce, chipotle pepper, bay leaf and seasoning. Cover and allow to bubble for about 5-10 minutes. Remove bay leaf and chipotle pepper when ready.
* While that's bubbling, toast your buns. Put a generous layer of vegenaise on the top bun and layer of arugula on the bottom. When ready, add about 1/4 cup of your sloppy joe "meat" to your bun, assemble and enjoy!