Sticky Barbecue Ribs (the vegan way)

This is an amazing recipe that I found from "The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook", and tweaked only slightly. At first glance, the recipe seemed sort of odd: peanut butter and gluten flour, yuck! But honestly, these are the best 'vegan' ribs I have ever had (and trust me, I have tried many). One realization that I have come to in regards to meat flavor, is that it is only good depending on what you put on it. Meat, on its own, tastes bland (although some would disagree about a good steak). Ribs are no exception, and it is really the pound of barbecue sauce on top that you are aiming for. This makes the vegan's job easy because the only thing that needs to be mocked is the texture. These ribs have everything going for them, except the cholesterol, fat, hormones, and the whole killing part (I rarely go on a rant like that but I am feeling ruthless at the moment). I wouldn't say that this recipe is uber healthy on its own, but I will say that it takes away that craving for meat you may have when transitioning into veganism. So give these a try, and I think you will love them (I am smiling right now watching Adam suck his saucy fingers :) )

Ingredients (serves 4-6):
1 bottle of barbecue sauce (about 2 cups)

2 cups gluten flour (also called vital wheat gluten)
1/3 cup nutritional yeast
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp sea salt (if using regular salt, add about 1/2 tsp more)

2 cups water (I like to use 1/2 vegetable stock)
a few shakes of liquid smoke (optional, but gives that smoky flavor)
1/2 cup smooth peanut butter
2 cloves garlic, minced

1/3 cup olive oil
1 small onion, minced or finely chopped

1) Saute the onion and oil in a pan until the onion becomes translucent (about 4 minutes). Set aside.
2) Whisk together all of the dried ingredients in a bowl, set aside. Whisk together all of the wet ingredients, (including the onion mixture) and add to the dry ingredients, mixing with your hands until a large ball is formed. The mixture should all come together, and will be slightly moist. 
3) Press the mixture into a lightly 9 x 13 baking dish so that it is even. Poke a few holes in it, and score several 'rib lines' so that ribs can be pulled apart. Bake in a 350 degree oven, for about 30 minutes (or until it slightly puffs up). Baste with 1/3 of the barbecue sauce, flip, and baste again with another 1/3 of the barbecue sauce. Finish baking for an additional 20 minutes. The ribs can be finished now, just tear apart and serve with more sauce, OR you can move on to the next step (which is what I like to do)

* For more 'authentic' barbecue flavor, remove ribs from the oven when finished and transfer to a grill, basting with the remaining 1/3 of the barbecue sauce (I like to use my George Foreman, otherwise you will have to flip, about 3 minutes per side. Serve with additional barbecue sauce and enjoy!

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  1. btw, I've made these the OLD/Original way, w/o the vital gluten...kneading and kneading a ww dough ball under cold water....THIS way is MUCH better!!!


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