Here’s a comfort food dish with “meat” and potatoes, chili beans and barbecue sauce, salsa, and a hint of Sloppy Joes. My husband loved it. A Manly Man kind of dish! A vegetarian dish you can make for the carnivores in your life and they probably will scarf it up so fast they won’t even notice there is no meat in it. The protein in this recipe comes from the beans and from Quorn Meatless and Soy-Free Grounds. Unlike soy or wheat protein, Quorn uses micoprotein that is derived from different types of mushrooms. So Quorn products have a meatier taste than most soy or wheat-based meat alternatives, as well as that nice meaty “bite” and chewy texture. A reader pointed out that there is powdered egg white in Quorn so it technically can’t be called vegan. If you can’t find Quorn, or want to go totally vegan, use any meatless crumble mix.
As it turns out, all of the ingredients except the celery in this dish are leftovers and pre-made products like canned chili beans and salsa. When I made this tonight, I started with leftover mashed potatoes and a can of Bush’s chili beans that Nick had picked up from the discount shelf at a supermarket. From there it got acquainted with the Sloppy Joe and taco thing. All we were missing was a football game.
Meatless Mexican Layered Shepherd’s Pie
2-3 cups leftover mashed potatoes (the day before I had baked three large potatoes in the oven for an hour and whipped them with a little unsweetened soy milk and Earth Balance non-dairy margarine and salt)
1 can Bush’s chili beans, drained
Barbecue sauce of choice
1 cup fresh salsa from the supermarket’s refrigerator section
1 package taco seasoning or 1 tablespoon Mrs. Dash’s Chipotle seasoning
1 package frozen Quorn Meatless Grounds
2 cups of chopped celery
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
1 cup of cherry tomatoes, sliced
1/4 cup of sliced jalapeno peppers from the jar
Open chili beans and drain off excess sauce so that the beans are moist but not soaking in sauce.
Pour them into a medium-sized glass or aluminum baking dish. Drizzle with a few tablespoons of your favorite barbecue sauce and gently mix.
Spoon mashed potatoes on top of that layer to about an inch thickness.
Set up a frying pan and put a teaspoon of olive oil in it. Turn up heat to high. Saute the celery in the hot pan until it starts to brown a bit on the outside, then remove to plate. Add another teaspoon of oil and put in the frozen Quorn grounds. They will break up as they heat, keep pushing them around, adding a bit more oil if they start to stick. When they are slightly brown and starting to crisp, add the garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste, and add them to the celery and mix together.
Add the Quorn-celery mixture on top of the mashed potatoes.
Put the salsa on top of that, spreading around evenly.
Stud the top of the salsa with sliced cherry tomatoes and japalenos.
Pop into a 350-degree oven for 10-15 minutes or until heated thoroughly.
Place a large spoon and bowls out. Serve with hot sauce and shredded cheddar cheese if you like. Another addition might be sliced avocados or guacamole to serve alongside.