If you’re on the east coast, I don’t need to inform you that it’s been blisteringly cold the last few weeks and, unless you live in Chicago or Minnesota where cold weather is routine, weather this frigid, even in Maryland, becomes an event: schools close, people work from home, facebook statuses whine about the weather, and everywhere you go people somehow work into the conversation a painfully obvious comment on the weather (e.g., “stay warm!” replaces “have a nice day!”, “it’s cold out there!” instead of “hello”, and an acceptable response to “how are you” is “it’s cold!”). If you’re on the west coast, you’ve probably already skimmed past this paragraph, ordered your next mojito or snow cone while lounging underneath your palm tree, and oblivious to the plight of those required to wear close-toed shoes and socks.
In an effort to refocus my energy from the downfall of snow while driving back from NYC this past weekend (backseat driving that is), I was perusing the January issue of Martha and hunting recipes that were on the heartier side to defrost my cold bones. I zeroed in on the recipe card for Chicken Pot Pie, yum.
On Monday night, I made a few simple veggie/vegan substitutions and voila–a beautiful and homey meal that we paired marvelously with a glass of bordeaux from Marks and Spencer.
I was recently informed by one of my strictly vegan friends (a friend who is so strictly vegan that she does not even allow a dish containing meat to enter her house) that wine in general not only contains grapes, but may also include “blood and bone marrow, casein (milk protein), chitin (fiber from crustacean shells), egg albumen (derived from egg whites), fish oil, gelatin (protein from boiling animal parts), and isinglass (gelatin from fish bladder membranes)” from the fining process. (I hate it when they slip isinglass into your beverage and forget to mention it!) In Australia, wine-makers actually have to indicate on the label if the wine contains non-vegan ingredients.
If you are a strict vegan or raw foodist (or just generally grossed out at the thought of blood and bone marrow entering your diet), one winemaker that offers vegan wines is M&S, who has been certified by the Vegan Society as a distributor that offers vegan-friendly wines.
Vegan wines use animal-friendly fining agents, such as carbon, bentonite clay, limestone, kaolin clay, plant casein, silica gel, and vegetable plaques.
If you do make Veggie Pot Pie and Vegan Wine, make sure to add a potato to the recipe (the link above is not the same recipe as the magazine–which I think is slightly better and also includes a potato and leafy green). Don’t forget about frozen puff pastry for the pie topping. (Depending on where you live, you may also be able to find a vegan version of puff pastry as well.)
Thumbs up from the little one on this dish. (No vegan wine until you’re 3, YOUNG MAN!)
My husband even made these mini-apple tarts with the extra dough left over from the veggie pot pie. I love the gluten-free dough recipe from A House in the Hills using millet and almond flours and am filing that idea away for another blustery day.
This post is brought to you by a contributor; thank you for supporting brands that make FVB possible.