Tag Archives: meatless

Cabberole the Dice (or, “Say What You Will About Redheads…”)

In my pantry today:

  • 1 small head red cabbage
  • 1/2 c chopped asparagus tips
  • 1 can petite diced tomatoes, drained
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 stalk celery
  • 1 medium orange sweet pepper
  • 4 eggs, mixed in small bowl
  • 1/3 c mozzerella, shredded
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp garlic-ginger paste
  • 2 tsp garlic paste
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 3/4 tsp red hot chili powder
  • dash asafoetida 

Cabberole.

I have made a huge mess in this kitchen. Wait, don’t run away — I promise this need not happen to you! It is nearly assured that proper prep will negate it. This wasn’t difficult, really — just a matter of finding synchronicity between the ingredients.

P1100214Chop and set to steaming the cabbage. Let steam until dark purple and still hosting its shape (8-15m depending on how crunchy you like to keep things). While steaming, start onions on ML in oil and melted butter then move to chopping/shredding anything else that needs it. Drain tomatoes and stir in both pastes; set aside. When onions begin to turn translucent add in the other vegetables and season. Add the tomatoes to that; stir.

Layer the bottom of an 8×8 glass pan with half of your cabbage. Top that with half of the tomato/vegetable mixture. Repeat one more time, then pour over that the eggs and top with cheese. Bake in 35o° oven for approximately 40m.

P1100216For serious, you guys. This was mostly an experiment and it ended up being 5 spoons of pretty durn delicious and fulfillingly filling. Vegetarians might already be drooling (I hope) but if you’re trying out some meatless Mondays I’d recommend this. Take it from one redhead who just mastered another.

Getting Over The Hump, Italian-Vegan Style

In my pantry today:

  • 1 32 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 14 oz can petite diced tomatoes
  • 1 5 oz can tomato sauce
  • 1.5 c macaroni, dry
  • 1/2 c Nutrela
  • 1/2 sweet yellow onion, finely diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3 c olive oil
  • 1 tsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tsp turmeric
  • 1/2 tsp cumin 
  • 2 dashes of salt
  • 1/2 tsp garlic paste
  • 3 drops doTerra oregano essential oil
  • Parmesan cheese to taste

meatlessmarinara

I started my morning by tossing some stuff in a crock pot and walking away. First, it was slice-chunks of onion and garlic in 1/3 c olive oil resting covered on the highest setting for about 20m. Stir in Balsamic vinegar, cumin and turmeric. Add a quick dash of salt. Cover and let continue to cook for another 20m. Now this all seems very time-dependent and I know most of us are not common to such luxury; in my defense all of the time between food handlings was wisely spent cleaning up after myself and getting ready for a day outside of the home. Food needed to be ready this evening so as to keep us away from unintentional glucose emergencies that end up requiring an errant drive through. In the cupboards were cans of tomatoes and macaroni. I am nowhere near a regimented dietary state, but I can foresee history’s repeats and perhaps solve a steep caloric intake of not-really-food items with a nice marinara. The power of a nice marinara should not be underestimated.

nutrelacrumbled

Before leaving the house, turn the crock pot to its lowest setting. Return home several hours later and rejoice at the odor which awaits you. Decide that the Nutrela deserves another chance because you have no other desirable proteins and a little extra time. Boil it for 17 instead of the 7 instructed on the box. Shrug at the point of defeat against texture; drain and fastidiously squeeze out the additional water inside each nugget (that’s not as bad as it sounds — just lay them all out and press a clean cloth into them with a firm hand). Dice them until they become almost a ground sausage consistency. In a small saucepan add the now-ground(ish) Nutrela with 1/2 tsp garlic paste and 1 drop oregano essential oil. Take a second to tenderly smash while stirring to ensure the not-meat’s submissive essence then set aside for a nutrela2few minutes while the macaroni finishes boiling. Add two drops of oregano oil to the marinara; stir. When those little elbows are drained, mix some marinara into the saucepan and serve over macaroni that was pelted before and after said sauce with Parmesan (or substitute a vegan option, since this recipe is vegan until this part). So the Nutrela downgrades a 5 spoon marinara dinner to a 4 spoon dining experience. Nutrela you are not a terrible foe, but my battles with you have only just begun.

The Shepherd with a Moral Objection to Meat

In my pantry today:

  • 1/2 c Nutrela, dry
  • 2 M Russet potatoes
  • 1/2 M sweet yellow onion
  • 3 L cloves garlic
  • 1/4 c whole wheat flour
  • 1.25 c vegetable broth
  • 1 tbsp tomato sauce
  • 3 tbsp butter
  • 3/4 c frozen peas
  • 6ish baby carrots
  • 1/4 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp coriander
  • 1 pinch asafoetida
  • 2 tbsp sharp cheddar, shredded

shepherdsvegetarianpieThis might’ve ended up being a full-on vegan recipe, but in an effort to ensure that my first experience with Nutrela wasn’t assuredly terrible (it’s easier to be assuredly terrible if it’s unfamiliar) I employed the assistance of butter and cheese. To be fair, I was wicked excited to see a non-meat protein that touted such an excellent black and white side-label (see below) for $1.99. And that’s not $1.99 a serving, it’s for an entire box with several meals slated. I really wanted this to work, and I will let you know up front that it was a relatively good experiment despite using primarily dairy fats in lieu of my normal heavy-handed seasoning.

nutrelaStart by preparing your Nutella… crap, Nutrela… according to box instructions.  When cooked and drained and then squeezed for excess moisture (because it will be in excess), set aside and go about doing the things with which you are familiar.

I sliced the garlic and onion thin, then minced it like I could give a shit and added it to the melted butter on L-ML. Stir in turmeric and let the whole mess saute in golden glory while for about ten minutes. I like to leave the skins on my potatoes for both ease and potential nutrients; slice and boil them until soft. 5-10m before they’re ready to drain/mash, throw the baby carrots in with the boiling water. When you drain the potatoes, just pick them out before mashing happens and set them aside.

nutrela2Now your garlic and onion should be ready to push to one side and fork-smash (I couldn’t find the whisk) whole wheat flour into. Mix in the tomato sauce and other seasonings. Make a paste then begin adding in broth. When everything is thick and gravy-y, add in Nutrela then stir in peas and sliced baby carrots. Remove from heat and pour into a glass baking dish. Fork-smash those taters and layer that on top. But not really on the top-top because you will also decide to toss on a sprinkle of cheese in one last silent prayer to the Not Sucking Gods. Bake at 400° for 20m or until cheese begins to brown. I believe I can do better with Nutrela, but believing even that means a huge success just happened — make sure you get it boiled to a texture you like, then pull out 4 spoons!

 

Meatless v. Meatloaded

In my pantry two days ago:

  • 1/5 c black beans
  • 1 ear corn, kernals removed
  • 1/2 c Rotel® tomatoes
  • 1/2 medium yellow onion
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 c vegetable broth
  • 2 tsp lime juice
  • 1 tsp red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp honey
  • 1 tsp corn starch
  • 1 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp turmeric
  • 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1/4 tsp asafoetida

This sounds a lot more complicated than it is — just mince your onion and garlic, saute on ML for a 10-20m then turn heat up to M and when the pan gets there, add a dash of vinegar and honey. Reduce heat to L and let sit for another 5m or so before you begin adding in beans and tomatoes. Mix seasonings with broth and corn starch, add to pan with corn and turn heat to M until a first few bubbles  pop. Turn heat to L and let rest for 10-15m before serving over (you guessed it!) rice with a little cheese on top for good measure (to remove the  vegan option on this already hearty meatless number). 4 spoons!

*It is of importance to me that on this day I also purposefully overcooked beans so that there are two more portions in the freezer for easy later use.

 In my pantry today:

  • a roll of pork sausage

So dinner the other night was excellent and meatless. Today — blame the steroids, because I’m not above doing that — I wanted to smell a big, cheap-ass tunnel of pork browning on my stove. After I met the odor quota, some was bagged for freezing, some grease reserved and then this:

  • 3/4 c browned ground sausage
  • 1 c leftovers from above (sans rice)
  • 2 c penne pasta

Toss all that together. NOM. 5 spoons!

*Also of note this week was the blanching, chopping and subsequent freezing of 10 giant tomatoes.

 

Hifalutin Frito Pie (or, “You Put What in There?”)

In my pantry today:

  • 1 c leftover meatless meaty chili
  • 2 c broken Fritos®
  • 1 c cheddar cheese
  • 1 c cooked rice
  • 12-20 stems of asparagus
  • 1/4 c chopped cilantro
  • 1/2 tsp Taco Bell® seasoning envelope
  • sour cream as garnish

In an 8×8 casserole dish, layer rice with a few finely-crumbled Fritos® mixed in for entertainment value. Cut the fluffy tips from your asparagus about 1/4″ below their hairline and mince the three next inches down (I tossed the rest of these stems after this step as I am still investigating how to best use them). Set the asparagus tops aside and sprinkle the rice with 1/4 c cheese and minced asparagus stems. Layer on your leftover chili. At this point you might see that there is no “right” way to be layering all this noise, so be creative! I tossed the asparagus tops in the chili pan dregs with a little Taco Bell® seasoning and mixed them with more well-crushed Fritos®. On top of that I layered 3/4 c cheddar cheese and topped with more Fritos® and some fresh cilantro. Cook the covered dish for 15-20m in an oven preheated to 400° and serve with a dollop of sour cream.

This might’ve gotten more spoons were the Fritos® not chewy upon reveal, as that is not a texture I anticipated or enjoy as garbled surprise in my end result. Whatever led me to believe in the magical crunch-retaining power of anything roasted under a foil cover? 3 spoons anyway.

Meaty Meatless Chili

In my pantry today:

  • 1 12 oz  package Yves Meatless Ground
  • 1 c cooked black beans
  • 1/2 onion, chopped
  • 1 tsp safflower oil
  • 2 14.5 oz cans petite deiced tomatoes
  • 1 15 oz can corn, drained
  • 1 envelope Taco Bell® seasoning
  • 1 envelope Taco Bell® sauce
  • 1 tsp hot red chili powder
  • 1/2 tsp asafoetida
  • shredded cheese and sour cream to garnish

I am admittedly wary of meat substitutes — not tofu, really, but the ones that market themselves as “OMIGOD JUST LIKE MEAT.” I don’t know how they’re necessarily an ideological comrade to the whole “not eating meat” thing. Aren’t they an admittance to the need or desire for meat in one’s diet, and wouldn’t that be a terrible counterpoint for vegetarians to make for themselves? The very existence of Pretend Animal Flesh seems to strain the argument for meatless living. I could be over-thinking this, and maybe because of that I’ve given this fake ground round a temporary reprieve by seasoning it to hell and back via Taco Bell®’s special blend. In this very special case, cloaking something new and bewildering in the familiar CanCoverUp style of a Fast Food restaurant was precisely the way to go.

Start onion and safflower oil out in a cold pan heating to M. After it’s solidly at full heat, add the Fake-Ums and stir with about 1/4 of the seasoning packet and all of the “salsa” (now, I had these things leftover from when I could only find tortillas in the various taco kits at the store). Add everything else, stirring in another 1/2 packet with all the ingredients. Add the hot red chili powder. Stir, let cook on L for a while then serve with cheese and sour cream. If it entertains you, think of making the dairy topping an insult to the meatless meat. 4 spoons!