Last night I lost my damn mind. Between choking sobs, I said to Dan:
“I. Hate. Chocolate. Souffles.”
It was nearly 1 in the morning when I sat down on the floor of the kitchen and cried like a spoiled, sugar-addled child. See this was my fourth night in a row of overdosing on chocolate and sugar and almost perfect vegan souffles. See I’ve been recipe testing for an upcoming feature in VegNew Magazine’s March issue and there is this villainous vegan chocolate souffle recipe that I love but can be rather difficult and moody*. Souffles are pretty vicious beasts – even when they’re not being veganized. There is a delicate science to them. A pinch of flour here or a bit too much soymilk there and they overflow before they’re sturdy enough to rise or they’re heavy as a brick… souffles are the jerkfaces of veganed treats.
I’ve tasted so many tester souffles in the past four days – my skin has begun to take on the scent of chocolate** and every night when I should be preparing for bed – well my heart is bouncing around in chest like a caged monkey. I haven’t fallen asleep before 3 am since last weekend. Last night as I wept, Dan hugged me and told me I was pretty and smart and that chocolate souffles were evil tyrants in a sympathetic tone that is reserved for the mentally fragile.
This morning we agreed to make our favorite vegetable & bean soup for dinner and to avoid sugar and chocolate for at least a week. This soup started out as one of those dinners you make from whatever’s in the fridge when you’re gotten home from a long trip and don’t feel like a running to the store. After years of living and traveling together – well Dan and I have perfected it and when we try to have the ingredients in the fridge when we get home so we can celebrate our homecoming. It’s become a bit of a ritual.
1 14oz can Garbanzo Beans, rinsed and drained
1 14oz can Kidney Beans, rinsed and drained
1 14oz can Lentils, rinsed and drained
1 cup Raw Kale Leaves, chopped
1/3 cup Fresh or Frozen Green Beans
1/2 Red Onion, diced
4 – 6 Cherry Tomatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons Pearl Barley
1/4 cup uncooked Orzo
1 Clove Garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon Bragg’s Liquid Amino Acid
1 1/2 teaspoon Oregano
1/4 teaspoon Celery Seed
1 teaspoon Crushed Black Peppercorn
1 teaspoon Onion Powder
2 Dashes Hot Sauce
Dash of Liquid Smoke
2 Bay Leaves
Toss all your ingredients in a large soup pot. Cover your pot and heat it to boil over a medium heat. Stir frequently.
Once your Orzo is tender – you’re ready to eat!
*And while some men find that irresistible in women – it’s bad for a recipe. Until it’s consistant and can be clearly explained a recipe is not a success – no matter how good it may taste or look.
**Not even kidding. It’s an odd medical phenomenon that’s both lovely and a bit bizarre.