My family has been infiltrated by something insidious: the cold virus. My mother and step-father lie in their chairs, sneezing and hacking at each other, and I swear I can see the virus in the air searching for its next victim. Since I’m the only other one in the house, its victim is narrowed to me. But I refuse. I will not get sick. With rest, relaxation, good food, and echinacea tea; there’s no reason why I should get sick. I know that cooking my own food thick with healthy veggies is the best way to stay healthy but, alas, not always possible.
I’ve been extremely busy of late, not conducive to fighting off a virus, and last night was no exception. I came home from work and had to dash off to the store before a conference call at 6pm so dinner was going to consist of whatever I could find in the grocery store. I was pleasantly surprised to find something new in the freezer section: a vegan cheese pizza made by a company called American Flatbread. I love flatbread pizzas and this one sounded tasty: Daiya mozzarella, basil, organic tomato sauce, and garlic. On the shelf above the pizza I found a package of Beyond Meat brand southwestern style chick’n strips. I bought both and a dinner was born, thanks to Safeway.
Beyond Meat is my new favorite product. I’ve used Gardein, Boca, and Yves brands since going vegan and am new to Beyond Meat. My mother found a package of the crumbles on sale a while back, added them to chili, and I’ve been a devotee ever since. I’m trying to move away from the mock meats but I still use them from time to time and Beyond Meat is one of the tastiest out there. If mock meats don’t gross you out, I highly recommend Beyond Meat.
Anywho…I brought my dinner, the cold medicine for my family, their soup and crackers, and two boxes of echinacea tea home and slid my dinner into the freezer for after my conference call. An hour later, I dragged my bleary eyed self back up the stairs and retrieved my dinner from the freezer. Talk about fast food: the chick’n strips cook from frozen in 3 to 5 minutes and the pizza bakes in 8. Well, 12-15 in my oven. I cooked the chick’n through then diced it, sprinkled it on top of the pizza, and slid the whole thing into the oven. Then I waited. Patiently. Stomach growling.
It was worth the wait. The flatbread had that perfect balance between crispy and chewy, I can never say enough good things about garlic and basil, the Daiya cheese melted beautifully, and my chick’n pieces were a perfect protein packed topper. The only complaint I have is that the pizza was too small. It’s perfect for one person, or maybe two if both have relatively small appetites or the pizza is going to be rounded out with soup and salad. It was perfect for me though: I ate half last night and the other half will go into the toaster oven at work for lunch today. I thought about rounding out my meal with a glass of Malbec but I chose to go for cold fighting power instead. I dislike over the counter cold medicines and don’t sleep well when I have to take them. Instead, I brew a cup of echinacea tea and add a splash (or a pour) of blackberry brandy. A good night’s sleep and I’m ready for a new day. Virus defeated!