All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015
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So – an old & dear friend of mine recently married the love of his life. When I asked if they were registered – he requested that I bring a dish for the reception instead. He & his husband are vegan – so I agreed to bring a slow cooker full of vegan yumminess for their 40 guests. I would not be the only one bringing food – so my dish was just to be one of many. I was excited to participate in the cooking because I felt it was a great way to introduce his non-vegan guests (which grew to 70) to a smorgasbord of vegan delights. Initially, I was going to make my 10-Minute Firecracker Chicken – seen below.
And – I did make it – but then I decided that the sharp flavor of the buffalo sauce might not have the broadest appeal – and that five pounds of vegan chicken might be unpleasantly heavy. So – I endeavored to mellow the flavors and I added potatoes & carrots to lighted it up a tad. The result is this dish I present today. It is still genuinely spicy but has more of a stew-like vibe going on – though it still has a bit of the sweet from the brown sugar in the Firecracker recipe – and the flavors are distinctly Asian. I made it in a 7-quart slow cooker so this recipe makes a LOT! If you are not feeding a group – either be prepared to freeze a bunch of this stuff – or cut the recipe down. I served it with my Coconut & Ginger Rice Pilaf with Pomegranate Seeds – seen below. They worked very well together!
Vegan Asian Chicken & Potatoes in Spicy Gravy for the Slow Cooker for a Group
Serves many – especially with rice
3 lbs vegan chicken (I used Beyond Meat)
3 large Russet potatoes – peeled & cubed
8 large carrots – sliced
2 cups buffalo sauce (I used Frank’s)
2-3 cups brown sugar (I used 3 but I think I would use less in the future)
6 TBS apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup Hoisin sauce
1/4 cup soy sauce (or tamari)
1/2 cup BBQ sauce (I used Hak’s – seen above)
1 cup vegan oyster flavored sauce
1/4 sesame oil
Crushed red pepper (to taste) – I used about 2-3 TBS
2 cups water
GARNISH – sliced scallions (optional)
You could probably just throw everything into the cooker & leave it on high for three hours – with the top off – and it should thicken up nicely but because this was for a reception – I wanted to be sure the sauce was thick – so – I cooked it down stove top first.
To do that – put the buffalo sauce, sugar, cider vinegar, crushed red pepper, sesame oil, hoisin sauce, soy sauce, BBQ sauce and oyster sauce into a sauce pan & bring to a rolling boil. In a little bit – less than ten minutes – it should look like molten lava – like in the video above. It looks like it would burn the fuck out of you – so be very careful with it. Once it is thick – put it & everything else into the slow cooker (including the water), mix it all up & cook, on high, 2 hrs or more – or until it is thick again & the veggies are tender. If it does not thicken – keep cooking on high with the top off.
Serve with rice and maybe some sliced scallions.