Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Recipe! Cincinnati-style chili cheese coney dogs - vegetarian style!

Hello friends!

Taking a break from talking about books to discuss another favourite topic: Yummy food and animal rights. I'm a vegetarian for environmental and animal rights reasons. I'm blessed to live in New York City where making that choice is a lot easier than in other parts of the country and world. I do miss some local delicacies, though.

(Photo credit: Cincy Images)

I grew up in rural Ohio north of the Cincinnati metro area. Anyone who has ever traveled through or lived there knows Cincinnati is all about the chili. And thankfully, local stores sell solo seasoning packets so you can to take that unique spicy-sweet taste on the road with you.

The last time I was home I thought to myself, knowing there are awesome veggie/vegan meat substitutes by Lightlife and others, that it would be easy to switch out the meat for meatless products, and still enjoy all the yummy hometown flavor! (For a tiny, tiny fraction of the calories and fat).

To be clear, I'm not getting paid to share this, I just believe in discussing different food options, for the sake of health and for animals, and this food is close to my heart! Marcos and I (we've a vegetarian household, bunny included *s*) were so excited by how deliciously it turned out!

You need:
1. A Cincinnati Recipe style spice packet from local Cincinnati Tri-state grocery stores or call Skytime, Inc for a mail order: 1-800-443-4371. These spice packets are spices only, making them vegan-friendly.
2. Lightlife Smart Ground or TVP of your choice (Texturized Vegetable Protein)
3. Tomato Paste (6 oz can or 8 oz can of plain tomato sauce)
4. Lightlife Smart Dogs vegetarian hot dogs or the brand of your choice
5. Shredded mild cheddar cheese (if you're vegan, your health food store should sell vegan cheese)
6. Hot-dog buns

Step 1. Obtain spice packets! Read the directions.
Step 2. Rather than the ground beef it calls for, add Lightlife Smart Ground (I make it with two 12 oz packages of Smart Ground, makes a nice pot-full and makes for great leftovers)
Step 3. Follow additive directions; water, tomato paste, etc.
Step 4. Bring to a boil then simmer to desired thickness.
Step 5. Drop Smart Dogs into boiling water (Approx 2 minutes)
Ste[ 6. Dogs into buns!
Step 7. Pour chili over the dogs.
Step 8. Generously sprinkle shredded cheese over top of chili, it will melt over top. (Additional topping option: Chopped onions)

YUM! Voila! You have the same delicious chili! Its a very easy meal that goes a long way, one chili packet and 2 packages of Smart Ground can easily top 12-14 coney dogs!

It refrigerates well for left-overs, and can top all kinds of dishes. Cincinnati-style chili (and shredded cheddar) goes over plain spaghetti too!

Thanks to the beauty of soy technology, I'm thrilled to have one of my favourite childhood indulgences again, but with less guilt! :)

Cheers and bunny kisses from Persebunny! (Visit Lightlife and other vegetarian food companies for great tips and recipes!)

For cruelty-free beauty tips, please visit the AAVS Compassionate Consumer guide! It's free!


Saranna DeWylde said...

I've been trying to move to a more vegetarian based diet, but so much of the vegetable protein has wheat or soy in it.

Do you know any that are gluten and soy free?

Leanna Renee Hieber said...

Hmm, several brands of the Texturized Vegetable Protein I've seen comes gluten free but not soy free, or vice versa. I think it might be a one or the other situation.

For protein, red kidney beans taste great in the spices too and could be considered a substitute.

I'll keep an eye out for this question, though, because it's a really good one, thanks for asking! (I confess while I appreciate the health benefits of vegetarianism I really made the choice because of my attachment to animals so I'm not always the healthiest vegetarian *s*) Cheers!

houndstooth said...

Oh good heaven! I LOVE Cinncinnati chili! Anything made with cocoa powder in it has to be good. I don't have the patience for eating it on dogs, though. Just give me a bowl of the stuff and I'm good to go!

Leanna Renee Hieber said...

@Houndstooth lol - I can see how the 'dog' issue might be problematic :)

Alien said...

Cincinnati is beautiful from the sky.

I will be sure to try this recipe. It sounds delicious.


houndstooth said...

Ha ha ha! You see correctly!

Leanna Renee Hieber said...

@Alien - Thank you for hovering by! I'm thrilled my hometown has a lovely aerial view, one of the famous Chili chains there is indeed "Skyline" chili :) - I hope you'll share some Alien vegetarian alternatives for us at some point, I bet that would be exciting :)

Vegetarian Cannibal said...

I'm always on the lookout for new veggie recipes! Thanks for posting!

Leanna Renee Hieber said...

@Vegetarian Cannibal - Yay! Thanks for reading! It was a thrill to have hometown fast food in a whole new - but same taste- way!

Keith Walker said...

I think quorn crubles are gluten and soy free, I could be wrong on the gluten part though.