Vegan Pulled Chicken with Jackfruit in a Sriracha and Blackberry Jam BBQ Sauce for the Slow Cooker

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2015

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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That above is jackfruit.  It is a staple in Southeast Asian diets.  It is a giant fruit that grows to 100 pounds.  If you want to read more about it – I went into some detail in my Vegan Jackfruit Spicy Szechuan Dan Dan Noodles post.  Those are the noodles – below.

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I bought this jackfruit in cans for $1.39 at my favorite Thai market – Bangluck – but I hear most Asian markets carry it.  Just be sure to buy UNRIPE or young jackfruit in water or brine.  Ripe jackfruit in syrup – it seems – tastes like Juicy Fruit gum & would be awful in this dish.

I made this in the slow cooker using a combination of jackfruit & Beyond Meat vegan chicken strips.

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Both the jackfruit (above) & chicken will require that you shred it using two forks to achieve the pulled chicken visual.  It is easy once they are warmed & soft.  Just fish them out of the BBQ sauce & shred them on a cutting board.

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Vegan Pulled Chicken with Jackfruit in a Sriracha and Blackberry Jam BBQ Sauce for the Slow Cooker

This makes a lot but I will post 4 recipes using it over the next few days

INGREDIENTS

2 (20 oz) cans of young jackfruit

9 oz vegan chicken

4 garlic cloves – chopped

2 TBS cider vinegar

2 TBS Dijon mustard

1/3 cup soy sauce or tamari

2/3 cup ketchup

1/4 cup blackberry (or other dark berry) jam or preserves

3 TBS sriracha

1 TBS molasses

2 TBS vegan Worcestershire sauce (optional)

1 (12 oz) bottle of dark (or other) beer (optional)

2 tsp smoked paprika

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 TBS onion powder

1 TBS garlic powder

1 TBS chili powder

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DIRECTIONS

Put everything in the slow cooker & leave on high for 5 hours.

At some point – you need to use two forks & shred the chicken & jackfruit.

Serve as you would serve any pulled chicken.

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Chipotle Gouda and Guinness (Stout) Mac and Cheese with Vegan Pulled Chicken (or Pork) in Homemade Chipotle Apricot BBQ Sauce

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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Macaroni & cheese.  Who doesn’t love it?  It can be customized so many ways and, even better, can be prepared in advance & baked in the last half hour so – if you are hosting a party – you can actually enjoy it, too, and not slave in the kitchen while the guests swill your liquor together.

I hosted a little birthday thingy recently & made three, count’m – THREE – different kinds of mac & cheese.  I made the one posted here and I made a Mint & Zucchini Mac & Cheese & a Smoked Gouda & Truffle Oil Mac & Cheese with Crispy Panko – seen below – respectively.

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I made this pulled chicken version with Beyond Meat vegan chicken.

You could use any fake (or real) meat.  I also made a homemade BBQ sauce (which is VERY easy) but your favorite jarred variety will do.

I used chipotle gouda.  Only 8 oz.  LOTS of other cheese, though, so the chipotle part was a tad overwhelmed but the chipotle BBQ sauce more than made up for it.  If you love chipotle, maybe add a chopped chipotle pepper or two into the cheese mix of double or triple the quantity of chipotle gouda?  These kinds of dishes have lots of wiggle room so do not get all anal about this shit.  Mix it up & trust.  It is fucking cheese & pasta.  Who is gonna complain?

I used a combination of various pastas in my three dishes.  The kind you use is up to you.

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My dish was inspired by this photo – but the recipe is mine.  The list of ingredients in the BBQ sauce is long but the instructions are short – so do not be intimidated.

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Homemade Chipotle Apricot BBQ Sauce

Makes WAY more than you need for just the mac & cheese recipe – so keep leftovers jarred in the fridge

INGREDIENTS

1 TBS Olive Oil

1/2 onion – diced

7 garlic cloves – minced

1 4 oz can chipotle peppers in adobo – minced

3/4 cup apricot jam or preserves

1 cup tomato sauce (I used a spicy homemade pasta sauce I had around but jarred/canned is fine)

1 cup ketchup

A few shakes hot sauce ( I love Crystal)

1/2 cup Worcestershire sauce

1 cup brown sugar

1-3 TBS sriracha (or other hot sauce)

1/4 cup cider vinegar

2 TBS Dijon

2 tsp salt

1/2 tsp celery salt (optional)

1 tsp ground pepper

1-3 DROPS Liquid Smoke (optional – but if you use it – GO LIGHT because this stuff gets gross fast)

2 TBS cornstarch (optional)

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the olive oil in a pan & saute the onions.

Once they are soft, add everything else & bring to a boil – then lower heat & simmer for 15 minutes or so.  You could puree this in a blender if you liked – but I did not.  I then left mine in a crock pot for a few hours but a few minutes stove top is great.  If you want it thicker – stir in some cornstarch at the end.  I did not do this.

Set aside.  See?  easy!

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OK – one thing – because I made this mac & cheese for a party, I cooked it in a large casserole pan but the ramekin images were taken the next day – when I reheated the leftovers.

This is not burned on top.  You are seeing the BBQ sauce & vegan chicken.  Mmmmmmm!

Chipotle Gouda and Guinness (Stout) Mac and Cheese with Vegan Pulled Chicken (or Pork)

INGREDIENTS

2 cups BBQ sauce (recipe above)

1 lb dry pasta – cooked & drained & cooled under running water

9 oz vegan chicken or pork (or real meat)

2 cups milk (I used almond)

4 TBS butter

4 TBS flour

pinch of nutmeg

1 tsp chipotle chili powder

1 12 oz Guinness (or other stout)

8 oz chipotle gouda

3 cups grated cheddar

2 cups grated pepper jack – divided

4 oz cream cheese

S&P to taste

1-2 cups panko or other breadcrumbs

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

Cook & cool the pasta.

Heat up 1 1/2 cups of BBQ sauce (reserve 1/2 cup to drizzle over the top later) & drop the vegan chicken in there.  Bring to a boil & the lower heat & simmer while you do the next things.  When you can, however, use two forks & shred the chicken in the BBQ sauce.

Warm the milk.

In another pan, melt the butter over med-high heat & then add the flour.  Whisk constantly & it should bet thick pretty fast.  Heat it until it starts to turn a golden sandy color.  Then, add the milk 1/2 cup at a time, whisking the whole time, until all the milk is incorporated & it is sorta thick – but still pourable.    Now add the beer the same way.  It could get frothy & bubble over so be careful.  It won’t get thick again once you add the beer.  Once it is all incorporated – add all the other ingredients – EXCEPT the BBQ chicken – and be sure to reserve one cup of pepper jack to top the dish.

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Spray a casserole pan with cooking spray & put the mac & cheese in.  If it seems too dry, stir in some milk.  I didn’t have to with this recipe.  Top with panko (and I spray them with cooking spray).  The one on the left is the one for this recipe.

Bake for about 25 minutes & then top it with the BBQ chicken & the reserved pepper jack.  Bake another ten minutes or so – or until the cheese is melted.

Drizzle with reserved BBQ sauce, if you desire.

Let it rest 5 minutes or so & serve that shit up!

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Boozy & Spicy BBQ Baked Black-Eyed Peas (Beans) – Vegan

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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OK – let’s talk about these beans.  They can be made with black-eyed peas, as I show here, or with white beans or really any kind of beans you prefer.  There are lots of ingredients & none of them are critical – so – if you want to skip one or two go ahead.  Or if you do not feel like wasting beer & whiskey in a pot of beans – don’t.  There is plenty of flavor in these guys so I feel confident you will like them even if you tweak the recipe a bit.

I quick-soaked these which is to say – I covered them with several inches of water and brought it to a boil & left them to soak (off the heat) for about an hour.  Or – you can just soak them overnight.  This makes them cook faster & breaks down the stuff in them that inspired that “beans, beans – good for you heart” gem we all remember.

I cooked these for about 3 hours.  If that sounds interminable – use canned beans and these could be done in an hour but the full two hours will blend the flavors better.

 

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Boozy & Spicy Baked BBQ Black-Eyed Peas (Beans)

INGREDIENTS

1 lb dry black-eyed peas (of which I used about 4 of the resulting 5 cups of beans post-soak) or 5 cans beans

1/2 green bell pepper – chopped

10 sweet mini peppers (or the other 1/2 of the green bell) – chopped

1 jalapeno – seeded and chopped (optional)

4 garlic cloves – chopped

1 (28 ounce) can tomato sauce

2 TBS red wine vinegar

2 TBS lime juice

1/2 cup soy sauce

1-4 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce – minced (use as much as your heat tolerance allows)

1/4 cup molasses

1/4 agave nectar (or honey – if you are not vegan)

1 TBS ground cumin

1 teaspoon dry thyme

3 TBS Dijon or other spicy mustard

1 bottle dark beer (I Used Guinness but Guinness is not vegan – so if you are vegan – use a vegan dark beer) – optional

1/4 cup Jack Daniels Honey Whiskey (or regular whiskey – if the honey whiskey isn’t vegan)  – optional

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 350 degrees.

If using dry beans – quick soak them & then bring them back to a boil & allow to simmer for an hour – while you get the other ingredients prepped.  Before draining the beans – reserve a cup of the bean water.  Measure out 4 cups of beans.  Save the rest for a recipe I will post soon!

Or just open & drain the cans of beans.

I pulsed the mini peppers, garlic & jalapeno in my food processor to mince them but a more coarse chopping is fine.  In a large bowl – combine all the remaining ingredients – except the beans & reserved bean water.

I sprayed a large (9×12?) ceramic baking dish with cooking spray & put the black-eyed peas in there and poured the liquid on top.  I baked it for two hours, stirring occasionally & added some of the reserved bean water to thin it a few times.  You may or may not choose to do this – depending on how much liquid you like in your beans.  I hadn’t boiled my beans for the hour after quick-soaking so they were still a tad more al dente than I like so I baked them another hour.  You may or may not choose to do this.

If using canned beans – all the steps above apply but they will probably be done in one hour – DEFINITELY in two.

Maybe try these with my Vegan Korean BBQ Ribs?

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Smoky Guinness Mac & Cheese with Crispy Fried Onions

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All Photos © Christine Elise McCarthy 2014

To see images of my past posts & get links to the recipes – look on my Pinterest board – HERE.

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All my posts now have a VERY customizable PRINT & PDF option.  Create a PDF & save the recipe to your computer or print it out.  It offers a “remove images” option & you can delete any part of the post you do not need before printing.  The button is below by the Twitter & Facebook links.

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This is a slight adaptation from a recipe posted by one of my favorite food bloggers – How Sweet It Is.  The main difference being simply that she topped hers with panko & fresh basil.  I opted for canned crispy onions!

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This is a really easy dish & the flavor of the Guinness really does come through.  Because of the dark beer – the dish has a browner color than traditional mac & cheese.  The crispy onions on top add a bit of sweetness.  A perfect dish for St. Patrick’s Day!!!

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Smoky Guinness Mac & Cheese with Crispy Fried Onions

serves 8-12

INGREDIENTS

5 cups uncooked macaroni

4 TBS butter

4 TBS flour

16 ounces milk (I used unsweetened almond milk)

16 ounces Guinness or other stout (or other beer)

16 ounces cheddar (I used a mix of 7 oz Kerrygold Dubliner & 9 oz Tillamook sharp) – grated

plus 1 cup grated cheese (I used cheddar)

8 ounces Parmesan – grated

1/2 tsp smoked paprika

1 tsp pepper

pinch of nutmeg

6 ounces crispy fried onion pieces from a can

Additional grated cheese to top the casserole – optional

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DIRECTIONS

Heat the oven to 375 degrees.

Cook & drain the pasta.  Feel free to under cook it a minute or two as it will cook more in the baking process.

In a large sauce pan, melt the butter over med-high heat.  Whisk in the flour & stir constantly for a few minutes – until it begins to brown.

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Slowly add the milk & beer – in increments – and stir constantly as it thickens.  It will not be as thick as most recipes because of the beer.  Once incorporated, add the 16 ounces of cheese & blend.  Add the spices & blend.   Lower the heat to medium & simmer about 5 minutes.  Add the pasta & blend.  Add an additional cup of grated cheese – if you feel it needs it.  I did.

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Transfer the mix to a greased casserole pan.  Top with more cheese (optional – I did not add more here) and top with the crispy onions.

Bake 25-30 minutes & then allow to set & cool for about 5 minutes before serving.

Slop that baby out onto some plates & swill it down with more Guinness!  HAPPY ST. PATRICK’S DAY!

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