I'm not vegan or vegetarian. If I had to choose a title I'd label myself a foodie. I also like experimenting, and I don't like oil-based nacho cheese. So when I saw a vegan recipe for a healthy looking nacho cheese that I had all the ingredients I had to try it!
First off the main ingredients are potatoes and carrots. The most unusual ingredient is nutritional yeast. I replaced the lemon juice with lime juice, as the important part was having an acid in there, it shouldn't affect the taste. You could probably use apple cider vinegar as well. The biggest change from the recipe is that I don't have a traditional blender. I have a ninja master prep instead. It takes up less table space, but also doesn't make mixture as smooth as a blender would.
1) The texture was perfect. I started as a texture eater and have slowly moved away from it as I grew, I still eat certain things for their texture and this fits that niech for me perfectly.
2) Taste wise It's not quite cheese. It was as deliriously salty as cheese, which is honestly what I look for in my nacho cheese anyways. I mean there isn't much other nutrition one can get out of it. But if you're looking for a melted cheddar this is not that.
3) It's super filling. I only made half the recipe and then ate a 1/4th and that filled me for the whole night.
In all I intend to make this again and hope you'll consider trying it too! If you'd like to try the recipe for yourself here's the link!
I have a German Shepherd whom I give peanut butter as a treat. I have also seen a couple infographics online about checking for a newly added chemical, xylitol, that is in peanut butter. For a while I checked every jar we got, but none had it. Was this a regional change? A chemical addition for a particular country?
I've done the research so you don't have to!
First, what is xylitol? It's a natural sweetener often found in chewing gum. It's find for human consumption and can lead to major issues if dogs ingest too much of it.
Secondly, which common peanut butter's are safe? The usual US brands such as Jif, Skippy, Peter Pan, and Planters are completely fine.
Third, which peanut butter's are dangerous? Many peanut butters that advertise themselves as having more protein, less sugar, and less fat. Many website list five peanut butter brands that have xylitol (most advertising to body builders), but since this became a hot topic many have removed the xylitol or removed the product completely. The only one I could confirm at this time is Nuts'n More.
If you're worried that your dog has digested xylitol please go to this Animal Hospital page to determine the best course of action.
, uThis is, perhaps, not the most flattering photo. But I promise you this was delicious and 4/4 people who know Buffalo cuisine enjoyed it so much they wanted seconds. With the quarantine of 2020 well underway I wanted a soul warming soup, while also getting a taste of home. This was the result!
Makes four bowls worth, or eight tea cups worth.
Chicken (I used chicken breasts, but you could use a whole chicken easily enough. Any amount of chicken over one cup is fine and can be changed to accommodate your meal plan for the week)
2 cups water
1/2 cup Franks hot sauce
1/4 cup barley
1 Bay leaf
1 tsp caraway seeds
1/2 tsp marmite (other umami related foods would be an ok substitute, such as miso)
1/2 tsp ground celery seed
Pepper to taste
Optional - carrots, peas, and/or onion. About 1/4 cup of each, I keep bags of frozen in the house.
Optional decor - 1 celery stick per serving.
Insta pot or crock pot
1) Put chicken, water, and Franks hot sauce into the insta pot for 10 minutes with natural release. (For a crock pot I would do the same ingredients, 4 hours on high or 6 on low.)
2) Take out chicken. Put at 1-2 cups of chicken meat, cut into small pieces, back into the soup broth. The rest can be used in other dishes. (I was originally making this chicken for chicken wing dip, and wanted to find a way to use the broth.)
3) Put barley, bay leaf, caraway seeds, marmite, ground celery, and any optionals into the broth. Set insta pot for 22 minutes with natural release. (For crock pot at least 4.5hours.)
4) Plate it up! It looks a little weird since the hot sauce combines with the natural fat from the chicken at the top of the soup, but it tastes really good! If you wanted to be fancy you could put a celery stick into the soup, which would look super cute sticking out of a tea cup!
When making gravy from scratch you start with the chicken juice that has come off when cooking. It mixes in with the onion and celery, the two most flavorful and smell educing plants ever used in the kitchen soup stock. They combine with the salt and pepper that didn't quite make it onto the chicken to give you the base of the gravy. Then you warm it up to just below a boil before mixing in the flour (or corn starch to keep it gluten free). Which thickens it up.
Once it's the right consistency you taste it and then, well then it depends.
Is it bland? Add salt, if that doesn't help then add some butter. Is it too salty? Better to even it out with some heavy cream. Perhaps it's not thick enough, better add more flour.
See, that's the art of it, knowing what needs to get added or tempered out from a base that will be different every single time, in order to always get to the same ending taste that you crave for. If gravy were a science then it would be exactly the same. The taste when it came off of the chicken would be the same and the same amount of flour would be added and the salt would be perfect every time because it would stick to the chicken just so.
But it's not.
Gravy is a simpler example of every craft, both in its frustrations and it's process. There have been numerous times were I stood there adding different ingredient after different ingredient, knowing that it just didn't taste right but not knowing what to add to make it better. In the exact same way editing involves round upon round of tasting the writing, seeing if the characters work, asking others to try the soup, before realizing that this was the exact taste you were looking for, and the taste that they were looking for, and perhaps people would be willing to buy that alphabet soup.
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