Hey ya’ll! So it’s year 6 of me Daniel Fasting and I am embarking on these vegan dishes from a perspective I’ve never had before. I think most of this is due to the fact that I have been incorporating less animal protein into my diet over the past year, primarily through no dairy due to an intolerance - although I do try to sneak it in on special occasions. I mean, what’s Thanksgiving without Mac & Cheese? Sadness…that’s what it is. It is sadness. Anyway, because of these choices, it makes some aspects of the fast easier, such as having no dairy and reading labels to make sure it’s not sneakily added to something I want to eat. Also, being aware of non-dairy substitutes and which works best for which cooking applications has been a blessing to learn over the last year and so now I’m here to share that with you all! Thus: Curry Mushrooms and Coconut Grits.
I’ve long had an obsession with Caribbean flavors and as a southerner, I love what to me is considered a classic. One of my favorite Caribbean dishes is curry, especially chicken and shrimp. I even have a recipe on my site here! One of the things I’d always thought about was making the shrimp with the grits for a Caribbean twist on a southern favorite. And, I was right, it was amazing!! So when the time came for the fast, I thought, how can I enjoy something like that but be fully compliant and I came up with this combo. The earthiness of the mushrooms paired with herbs and spices are delicious on their own, but then: THE GRITS!! These grits are so super creamy and flavorful without having to use dairy or butter. Instead, I used coconut milk, veggie stock to really build the flavor of the grits. This creates a really good backdrop of flavor to go with the creaminess that really compliments the mushrooms.
You can make this with shrimp or chicken, cauliflower or chickpeas, but I encourage you to try it with the mushrooms. From the quick pan sauce to the crispy texture they impart, they provide a flavor that is really unmatched when it comes to veggies. I also encourage you to use the coconut milk for the grits. Coconut milk has a unique flavor and really adds to the tropical vibe of this dish. Full fat coconut adds a great mouthfeel that you’re used to with dairy and butter. For the creamiest grits, finish off with a little dab of coconut oil the way you would butter and add to your bowl. Top with the mushrooms and pan sauce and a little fresh herbs or vegan parm if you’d like and devour. Trust me, just because this is vegan, does not mean you’ll be disappointed. If you’re keto, you can serve these mushrooms with cauliflower rice mixed with toasted coconut flakes to get that coconutty flavor. Also, this recipe easily doubles and triples to feed an entire group if desired. Give it a try today!