Mofo in the morning.
Ahhh, Agador Spartacus…one of the greatest characters in any movie. Ever.
There is a moment in the movie “The Birdcage”, at the dinner party where the soup or something ridiculous is going out to be served and Agador says with a handful of shrimp, “but I have trimps!”. Great line. Greaaaat line.
Now every time I eat vegan shrimp I think of Agador. Vegan shrimp you say? Yes. Vegan shrimp. They’re pretty weird because they look an awful lot like real shrimp and they do a pretty great job at maintaining some of that shrimp texture. It probably seems like I eat a lot of fake meats and vegan cheeses, but I really don’t. There are a handful of products though, that I really love and these bizarro fake shrimp are one of them.
The ingredients in these are not too scary, but, you know, they’re still processed so they’re not an everyday or really every week kind of food. I eat them once every other month or so. Plus, I don’t want to ever get tired of them because I love them, so it works as only thinking of them as a “treat”. Wait, have I already said how much I love them?!? Hey, funny story real quick: my beloved Whole Foods stopped carrying these guys and I was a very sad fox for a while. I looked in some other stores, but couldn’t find them. So, like any sane, rational person would do, I got online and found the manufacturer’s phone number and called them to harass them. They told me where I could get them, but kept naming places in Orange County and Ventura….I told them I was looking for a place closer to LA when the woman on the phone said that they’re made in Monrovia. Monrovia?!? Hey, that’s not that far. She told me that if I was willing to buy them in bulk, that I should drive to the headquarters in Monrovia where they have this little shop underneath their offices. I asked how much “bulk” meant, as I have limited freezer space and she told me 3 lbs. SOLD. I immediately drove to Monrovia for my 3 lbs of vegan shrimp and left the happiest person ever.
Anywhooo, they’re pretty versatile in the way where you can use them anywhere you would have used real shrimp.
Like in this Risotto with Pesto & “Shrimp”
or in these super amazing delicious “Shrimp”/Field Roast/Mushrooms/Shallots & GRITS”. Mmm….grits.
If you’d like a less involved way of trying these vegan shrimp for the first time, well then, please enjoy this very easy, very simple recipe for a “shrimp” & “bacon” quesadilla. 🙂
Vegan Shrimp & Tempeh Bacon Quesadilla
1 bag Daiya Pepperjack Shreds–I keep telling Daiya they need to make this one in block form.
1 package vegan shrimp, thawed—I love this brand, Vegetarian Plus….but I hear lots of asian grocers carry different brands and there is a company called Sophie’s Kitchen that also makes them, but I’ve never tried those
half package Lightlife tempeh bacon or homemade tempeh bacon, cut into little pieces
tortillas–I generally eat quesadillas on whole wheat flour tortillas, but I want to try these delish sounding brown rice ones that I heard about on Your Vegan Girlfriend
guacamole–use your fav. I have an excellent recipe that I will share in the future.
pico de Gallo
So, firstly, you’ll want to saute your tempeh bacon and vegan shrimp in a tiny amount of oil, really you don’t need much. Then, assemble your dilla. Layer your tortilla of choice with the cheeze, then layer your shrimp and tempeh….and if you’re a weirdo like me….put your guac into the quesadilla as well. I know, I know….you’d think you’d top a quesadilla with guac after it’s already cooked, but I like it inside with the melty cheeze and other goodies. Once you are done assembling, throw your quesadilla on the stove top and melt away, or you can do this in the microwave as well.