Giving up meat was pretty easy, considering I had never cared much for it. With one exception: Bacon. There is something so amazing about the taste and texture of crisply cooked pepper crusted bacon.
We just started getting these weekly produce boxes from an awesome company called Organics to You. They get delivered to your front door and it’s a great variety of mostly local organic produce that changes seasonly. Last week’s box came with some shiitake mushroom and we decided to take a stab at making some mock bacon.
In the past, I’ve made eggplant bacon, which turned out pretty tasty, but this shiitake bacon was without a doubt the best bacon substitute we’ve had yet! The taste was spot-on and the texture was perfectly bacon-y.
I started with 6 oz of shiitakes and removed the stems, cutting the tops into small pieces.
Mix together the following:
1 Tbs oil (I used vegan bacon flavored grapeseed oil)
1 tsp smoked salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
1 tsp granulated garlic
A splash of liquid smoke
A generous amount of black pepper to taste
Toss the sliced mushrooms in this mixture and the lay out on a lined baking sheet or silpat.
Bake for 15 – 20 minutes at 325 degrees F (or until they have reached the desired level of crispiness)
Let cool completely before storing.
These make the perfect topping for salads, pasta, or sandwiches.