Non-Boeuf en Daube

2 Cups TVP Chunks or Soy Curls

3 Tablespoons Olive Oil

1 Large Yellow Onion, Finely Diced

5 - 6 Cloves Garlic, Finely Minced

1 Cup Peeled and Diced Carrots

3/4 Cup Pitted Kalamata Olives

1 14-Ounce Can Fire-Roasted, Diced Tomatoes

1/4 Cup Dried Porcini Mushrooms, Finely Chopped

4 - 5 Sprigs Fresh Thyme

3 Small Bay Leaves

1 Cup Dry Red Wine

1 Cup Mushroom Broth

2 Tablespoons Soy Sauce

1 Tablespoon Date Molasses

1/4 Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon

Pinch Ground Nutmeg

1/4 Teaspoon Liquid Smoke

Salt and Pepper, to taste

Cooked Rice or Pasta, to Serve (Optional)

Bring enough water to cover the TVP or soy curls (about 2 1/2 - 3 cups) to a boil and let stand for 30 minutes. Once your protein of choice has fully rehydrated, drain the excess liquid thoroughly and set aside.

Coat the bottom of a large pot with the oil and set on the stove over medium heat. Add in the onions and garlic when the oil begins shimmering, and saute for 4 - 5 minutes until golden brown. Introduce the carrots and olives next, cooking for another 3 minutes or so before incorporating the diced tomatoes, including the liquid they're packed in, and dried mushrooms. Give the mixture a good stir and it come up to a steady simmer.

Go ahead and add in all of the remaining ingredients at this point and reduce the heat to low or medium low, keeping the stew at a very gentle simmer. Continue cooking until the carrots are meltingly tender and the liquid has significantly reduced. This could take anywhere from 2 - 3 hours, so be patient! The resulting nuanced depth of flavor cannot be rushed.

Remove the bay leaves and sprigs of thyme right before serving. Ladle over your favorite starch for maximum enjoyment.

Makes 6 - 8 Servings