Saturday, September 27, 2014

Magic Vegan Bacon Gravy!

As some of you may know, if you're still following along, this month is known to vegan bloggers everywhere as "Vegan MoFo" or Vegan Month of Food Blogging. Hundreds of bloggers from all over the world are posting their recipes, ideas and reviews. There are "Iron Chef" contests, Instagram photos, recaps and fun giveaways. While I'm mainly signed up to give myself the needed inspiration to blog more regularly, I DO like reading what other bloggers are cooking up. And sometimes I even enter the contests..

What, WHAT?
I was surprised and a little amused last week when I was notified that I'd actually WON one of the Vegan MoFo contests. For a product I'd only recently heard about, and wasn't terribly interested in, called... (don't laugh) "Magic Vegan Bacon Grease". Yes. Seriously.

Let me explain.
I grew up in a vegetarian home.
I've always cooked vegan or vegetarian. I don't think I've ever even SEEN someone cook bacon in real life!
The very words "Bacon" and "Grease" horrified me a little (I'm not exactly sure why, when I am perfectly happy embracing every other faux-meat product on the market). I guess I really wasn't sure what one DID with ....bacon grease? I thought the idea was to drain all that meat-fat-stuff OUT of the pan? But what do I know?

Well, according to my blogger-friend Bianca, whom I trust for all things Vegan and Southern, "Down South, people save their bacon grease. And they cook with it over and over and over." Seriously? Alrighty then...
So, what to do with this mysterious jar of VEGAN bacon grease? It occurred to me: Google what people did with the REAL stuff....
Oh. ...duh. Gravy. 
(And after reading reviews, apparently way more than gravy - the stuff IS magic! Drooling vegans everywhere are making vegan bacon popcorn, vegan bacon dressing, southern greens, home fried bacon-potatoes, etc.)
Well OF COURSE! That makes perfect sense now, and with my love of all things American-Southern, I have NO idea why this was such a foreign idea to me.

So I immediately went to work making gravy. Maybe I should have tried a more traditional cream-style bacon-y breakfast gravy to go with grits or biscuits, but it was dinner time and my family was craving mashed potatoes and "nut loaf", so that's where the bacon gravy ended up. And it was amazing!!I might never make gravy any other way again!
Made from coconut oil, soy protein, spices, hickory and maple flavors, you don't need a lot, but it adds a great flavor to gravy or whatever you decide to use it on.
As you can almost see in the picture, I also sauteed some onions and Hungarian sweet peppers in the bacony magic. Also epic, and worth repeating over and over. I admit I was a skeptic, but now I'm SUPER excited by this new addition to my vegan arsenal.

If you'd like to try this deliciousness, and if, like me, you live in a vegan wasteland where new products never manage to make it within 75 miles, let me assure you, you can order this online. That's what I'll be doing. Soon!

This is a nice, basic, brown gravy. I didn't want the bacon flavor to overpower the other parts of the meal, and it didn't, a perfect balance of with a bit of bacon-sweet-salty-smokiness, it will go GREAT with your dinner-time loaves, burgers, roasts, etc.

Magic Vegan Bacon Gravy

  • 2 Tbsp. Magic Vegan Bacon Grease
  • 1 medium onion, minced
  • 4 Tbsp. flour
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 tsp soy sauce
  • 2 Tbsp strong coffee (made from instant or the dregs left in the pot are fine)
  • 1 tsp white or red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup unsweetened plant milk
  • salt, pepper, sage to taste
Melt Magic Vegan Bacon Grease in cast-iron skillet over low-medium heat. Add minced onion, increase heat to medium or medium-high.
Watch carefully and stir with whisk to keep from sticking, cook until onion starts to brown and is translucent.
Serve over everything! 
Lower heat to medium, add flour and stir for several minutes until flour-onion-oil mixture starts to turn light tan.
Add water gradually, stirring to keep things smooth. Turn heat back to medium-high and add soy sauce, coffee and vinegar. Let gravy come to a boil and turn down to barely a simmer.
Add plant milk and slowly simmer for 5 minutes until thick. Add water if needed. Season to taste with salt, pepper and a pinch of sage if desired.
Serve over anything!


Panda With Cookie said...

Yay! I'm glad you liked it!

laura said...

This product fascinates me. Even though I grew up in the shallow South, we didn't save and use bacon grease. Bet it would make collards something special. *pulls out credit card*

Tofu Mom (AKA Tofu-n-Sprouts) said...

Ahhhhh - I LOVE that term... "The Shallow South"!! Perfect!
I don't have any greens in my kitchen right now but I imagine collards, kale, anything like that would be DEEEE-LISH with this stuff! Definitely on my "must try" list!