July 1st, 2004

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red beans and 'gravy' on bismatti rice!

This is something between spaghetti and chili sauce and so much better than typical rice and beans. I took a recipe from 'classic vegetarian cooking' and switched it around a bit to comply with what foodstuffs I had on hand and ended up with a yummy cheap and easy meal:

red beans and gravy

Ingredients:

rice
1 & 1/2 c bismati rice
2 c water
1 tbs margarine
1 tsp salt

beans and gravy
2 tbs olive oil
1 large onion chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
2 tbs chili powder
1 tbs all purpose flower
1 tbs tomato paste
14 oz can of crushed tomatoes
14 oz can of red kidney beans (rinse!!)
2/3 cup veg stock
2 tsp salt
1/2 tbs onion powder
1 tbs garlic powder


Instructions:
In a bowl rince the rice twice, then let the rice soak in about 4 cups water. Set aside for 30 minutes.

In a skillet/frying pan cook the onions and the garlic for 2 min. or until the onions release some of their water. Add the flour and whisk in pan (or move around with a fork) until a thick gravy is made. Dump in the crushed tomatoes, the paste, the beans and the veg stock. Add in the spices and lower heat to medium. Stir occasionally.

After rice has soaked for 30 min bring 2 c water and the margarine and salt to a rolling boil. Drain rice, and add it to the boiling water, and cover pot. Watch the pot every 3 min. The rice will definitely cook in under 10. When the surface of the rice is a bit puckered pull it off of the stove and let it sit uncovered for 2-3 min.

Serve beans in gravy sauce over rice and enjoy!
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  • yerdua

Italian Garlic and Potato Soup

This recipe came from Donna Klein's The Mediterranean Vegan Kitchen, a book that I highly recommend.

ingredients:
-1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
-1 medium onion, chopped
-1 stalk celery, chopped
-1 1/4 pounds potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
-1 large head of garlic, cloves separated and peeled
-4 cups vegetable broth
-2 cups water
-11/2 tsp dried thyme leaves
-1 bay leaf
-salt and pepper to taste

In a soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat and add onion, carrot, and celery. Cook for about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to medium-low and add potatoes and garlic. Stir often, cook for about 15 minutes (until potatoes and garlic are softened). Add broth, water, thyme, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Then bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat and simmer covered for about 30 minutes (until all ingredients are soft). Remove from heat and discard the bay leaf. In batches, transfer teh soup to a blender and blend until smooth. Before serving, add more salt and pepper if necessary.


I made a few changes when I made this: I didn't use celery (didn't have any and my brother said he doesn't like it), I used an Italian Seasoning blend instead of thyme since I didn't have that either. After blending, I noticed it was pretty thin and watery. Maybe it's supposed to be that way? But I like a thicker soup, so I heated it longer to boil off some excess liquid. It was very good, and even my non-vegan brother liked it.

MUST...HAVE...STEAK!

It all started this morning, when I was just hainging around, minding my own business, and I saw my housemate's Boca sausage sitting on the counter. My brain and my stomach starting working at the same time.

"Must...have...fake...meat!" they rumbled. It was not the kind of rumble you can say "no" to. It was not the kind of rumble you can reason with. It was the kind of rumble that you must, in all instances, obey.

So I grabbed my trusty bicycle (stopping briefly to patch the tire) and rode valiantly to the local hippie grocery co-op to get my fix. The place isn't vegan by any means, although it is quite vegan-friendly, and they have a wide selection of the kinds of things that health-conscious, environmentally-conscious, animal-conscious, general-state-of-being-conscious people appreciate. I'm not vegan anyway--pescatarian, but house policy is strictly against any kind of meat, seafood or otherwise, being cooked on our stoves, in our pans, in our ovens, etc. So I know my limits.

Walking by the sausage at the grocery co-op made my stomach cry for mercy. I squelched it and went over to the fake meats section (which is about the same size). I ended up buying some soyrizo (soy chorizo) and imitation buffalo wings, which I plan on eating sometime this weekend. But this brings me back to my original point:

What are the best fake meats that you've had? I'm not talking TVP or seitan, either. I've had Boca burgers before, and they're okay but get old after a while; Gardenburgers are no good in my book; and Quorn is alright (but not vegan).