Options abound here. Substitute any of the many meatless chicken strip alternatives for the soy curls and serve over buttered toast (see photo) or biscuits, puff pastry squares, rice, or noodles. Vegetable broth can be swapped for the water/bouillon base. This dish offers all the comfort of leftover turkey and gravy, rounded out by the goodness of peas and mushrooms.

Ingredients:

¼ cup whole raw cashews

¾ cup plain unsweetened nondairy milk

4 ounces (2 cups) Butler soy curls

2 ½ cups hot water

2 teaspoons Better Than Bouillon No Chicken Base

2 tablespoons nondairy butter, such as Miyoko’s

3 tablespoons dry sherry or white wine

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons neutral oil

8 ounces (2 heaping cups) sliced button mushrooms

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 ½ cups frozen peas

Salt and pepper to taste

Chopped parsley for garnish

Directions:

  1. In a small saucepan, boil the cashews in plenty of water for 10 minutes. Drain them and process them with the milk in a high-speed blender or smoothie maker for two full minutes. Set aside.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the hot water and chicken base until dissolved. Add the soy curls and stir occasionally until the soy curls are hydrated, in about 15 minutes. Then drain them and wring them dry, reserving the broth.
  3. In the same saucepan (now vacated) you used to cook the cashews, melt the butter, and when it becomes foamy add the flour and whisk for about five minutes on low heat. Gradually add the broth to the saucepan, whisking constantly on medium heat until the sauce thickens. Then add the cashew/milk mixture and sherry and continue to cook on low heat until thickened and hot. Set aside.
  4. In a large sauté pan, warm the oil and add the mushrooms, drained soy curls, and garlic. Cook and stir over medium heat for 10 minutes, until somewhat browned.
  5. Pour the saucepan of thickened broth/cashew cream into the sauté pan. Stir in the peas and cook on low heat for five minutes, until the peas are hot and the sauce is slightly reduced. Taste for salt.
  6. Garnish with chopped parsley and plenty of freshly-ground black pepper.

Wendy Andresen lives in Camden with her husband, Ray; her Sheltie, Sunshine; and her bunny, Rustle. She welcomes responses to her column at wendyandrayzer@yahoo.com.