Well, one thing is done and over with.  Come this late-summer I’ll be living in Roanoke, Virginia and working towards my MFA in poetry at Hollins University.  Hollins was one of my top two choices and it ended up being my only choice (this is not the best year to try to get a graduate degree or a job, money anywhere is few and far between), but I think I’ll be happy there.  I first thought about attending Hollins for my undergraduate degree, but the school was a bit too conservative (everyone wore pearls, everyone!), so I nixed it off my list.  I then discovered Annie Dillard’s Pilgrim at Tinker Creek and fell in love with the muskrats and frogs and mountains described in her beautiful philosophical nature-writing text.  I definitely plan on finding her muskrats as soon as I can once I move up there.  All in all, I’m excited.  I would have loved to have gone to UNC Greensboro and worked with Stuart Dischell and Jennifer Groatz, but the chance to work with Eric Trethewey (Natasha Trethewey’s father) and Thorpe Moeckel will be amazing.  As nature-obsessed poets, I know I’ll learn a lot from them.  So hooray, one piece of my life is decided!

Another major piece of my life (well, since I read about it over at Smitten Kitchen) was successfully completed on Saturday morning: veganizing Deb’s migas with tomato-chipotle coulis.  Eggs & chorizo?  No problemo.  The recipe is really quite simple.  It seems a bit daunting, but even making my own homemade tortilla chips was quite easy, given my mother’s awesome 1970s Fry Daddy that I stole from her the last time I was at her house.  Seriously, the seventies brought so many wonderful, strange things to home-kitchens everywhere!

I substituted one recipe of scrambled tofu for the eggs, Trader Joe’s soyrizo for the chorizo (I wish I’d had time to make my own, like my chorico), and the rest of it was the same as the original recipe.  And most seriously, make your own tortilla chips if you can.  It’s worth it for the satisfying, salty, thick crunch of freshly fried corn tortillas.  So so so good.  All of my omni-friends loved the recipe, and while it might have been a bit hot for some, I thought the heat level was perfect.  I love me a good chipotle recipe!

Migas with Tomato-Chipotle Coulis

To make the tortilla chips:

Take 10 6 or 8″ round corn tortillas and cut into 8 triangles.  Heat up 1/2″ of vegetable oil in a pan.  Once the oil is hot, drop in 5 or 6 triangles at a time and fry until the chips become hard and golden.  Transfer the fried chips to a paper bag and salt.  (The paper soaks up the excess oil.)

To make the Tomato-Chipotle Coulis:

2 large, round tomatoes or best available
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 white or Spanish onion, minced
1 chipotle en adobo, from a can (use 1/2 if you’re not a big fan of hot, spicy food)
Kosher or sea salt to taste

Puree all of the above in a blender jar. Heat a sauce pan over high heat. Add oil to coat. Once the oil it hot, add the sauce. Cook for 15 minutes or so and season to taste.

For the Migas:

2 links Trader Joe’s soyrizo
1 recipe scrambled tofu (I used Isa’s)
2 tbsp oil
20 corn tortilla chips, preferably fresh
Fresh cilantro for garnish

First, start the scrambled tofu.  Mince 1 onion and cook in 1 tbsp oil in a large skillet (5-7 minutes).  Once the onion is tender and translucent, add 2 minced cloves of garlic.  Cook for 1 minute.  Add a spice blend of 2 tsp cumin, 1 tsp thyme, 1 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp tumeric, 1 tsp salt.  Cook for one minute.  Crumble 1 lb of extra-firm tofu into the onion-spice blend and cook for 15-20 minutes over medium-high, or until the tofu is firm and ready to eat.

Next, add the soyrizo.  Stir the soyrizo into the tofu and add 1 tbsp oil.  Cook for 5 minutes or until the soyrizo has absorbed the oil and is cooked through.  Add the chips to the mixture and break them up slightly.  Cook for 1 more minute.

Set up four plates for serving. Ladle some coulis in the bottom of each dish, top with some of the tofu/soyrizo and sprinkle with the cilantro. Serve immediately.

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