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Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Tail Gators and a 'Bloody Bay' 

Tailgating fervor in Louisiana raised to a red-hot fever with this weeks entry in The Green Cutting Board's contest to find vegetarian versions of Famous Restaurants Signature Dishes. This simple, delicious party dip serves up lots of the taste of the sea in a sauce even old Crabers would appreciate. Melanie's secret: "Old Bay Seasoning"

Vegetarian Version of
Margaritaville® Famous Crab, Shrimp and Mushroom Dip
Thanks to Jimmy Buffet for his continued support of the Save the Manatee Club


2 tablespoons soy spread
1/4 cup minced celery
1/4 cup minced onion
1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
2 cups soy creamer
1/2 cup potato flakes
1 1/2 cups sliced white mushrooms
1 cup TVP (textured vegetable protein)
1 cup firm tofu
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup shredded soy cheddar cheese
1/3 cup shredded soy Monterey jack cheese
2 green onions, sliced


2 loaves Italian bread
1/2 cup soy spread, melted (1 stick)
1/2 teaspoon dried parsley flakes
1 Tbls minced fresh garlic

1. Melt 2 tablespoons of soy spread over low heat in a large saucepan. Add celery, onions and red pepper flakes, simmer slowly, (sweat) the ingredients over low heat for 20 minutes. You don't want the ingredients to turn brown, rather you want them to slowly cook until the celery softens and the onions begin to turn translucent.

2. Cook sliced firm tofu 4 to 5 minutes in a saucepan with 1 tsp of soy spread and a healthy pinch of "Old Bay Seasoning"

3. Boil TVP in water with a tsp of "Old Bay" for 1 minute until firm

4. Add soy creamer, potato flakes, mushrooms, TVP, seasoned firm tofu and salt to the pan. Turn the heat up a bit until the liquid begins to bubble, then bring the heat back down and let the mixture simmer for 20 minutes or until it reduces to about 1/2 the volume and becomes thick. Watch the saucepan carefully to make sure the mixture doesn't bubble over. In the meantime, crank your oven up to broil.

5. Prepare the bread by cutting the loaves into 1/2-inch thick slices. Combine the dried parsley flakes and diced garlic with a stick of melted soy spread in a small bowl. Brush some of this garlic spread on each side of the bread slices and toast under a hot broiler for 1 to 2 minutes per side or until the bread is toasted to a light brown.

6. When the dip has thickened pour it into an 8 x 8-inch casserole dish. Combine the shredded cheddar and jack cheese and sprinkle the cheese mixture over the dip. Broil the dip for 3 to 4 minutes or until the cheese is melted. Sprinkle sliced green onions and serve hot with garlic toast on the side, and some spoons or forks for spreading the dip onto the toast.

Vegan Recipe Interpretation From: Melanie V. Gramercy, LA
With thanks to
Original Recipe by Todd Wilbur
From: Top Secret Recipes

Makes 6 to 8 servings.

Because we like the use of "Old Bay" which lends its' seafood essence to Melanie's recipe we have included this drink suggestion: the


excerpt from
: A Vegetarian Cooks' Book
The Green Cutting Board Press, 2004

1 1/2 oz vodka
3 drops Tabasco sauce
3 oz tomato juice
fresh ground black pepper
1/2 tps vegetarian Worcestershire sauce (see recipe below)
splash of fresh lemon juice
dash of sea salt; to taste
1/2 tsp "Old Bay Seasoning"

Stir or shake and pour over cracked ice, serve with a wedge of lime

Serving 1, 6 ounce 'Bloody Bay'

Vegan Worcestershire Sauce
by Joanne Stepaniak

6 Tbls water
6 Tbls brown rice syrup
1/4 cup tamari soy sauce
2 Tbls apple cider vinegar
1 tsp barley malt syrup
1 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp garlic granules
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
pinch ground cloves
pinch onion granules

Place all the ingredients in a blender, bowl, or jar with a lid.
Blend, whisk, or shake until the mixture is smooth and the powders are well incorporated, refrigerate


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