Post # 328 Vegetarian Slow Cooking

January 5, 2015 at 7:41 PM | Posted in Uncategorized | Comments Off on Post # 328 Vegetarian Slow Cooking

Today was a busy day for me.  I was up very late writing, so I needed to review and edit what I did.  It was several thousand words.  I was impressed with myself.  I also had tasked myself with taking down the Christmas decorations, outside and in.  Then the dogs started throwing up for some reason, all of them a different times, and apparently for different reasons.  In the midst of all that, a very good friend contacted me via email asking for crockpot vegetarian recipes.  Her requirements are that it needs to be something she can do all the prep work ahead of time and then freeze in a zip lock or store in a jar.  In a busy day, she can then toss the contents into the crock pot with the appropriate liquid and come home to a well-cooked dinner that her family thinks she’s been working on all day.

Naturally, the first thing I thought about was soup.  You throw some seasonings and some beans or lentils in a jar.  When you’re ready, you toss it into the crock pot with some water and away you go.  But, that can get boring.  So then I started thinking about different flavor profiles and came up with some great ways to get the job done.  I’ve known this woman since college so I have a fair idea of the things she likes.

Taco Filling – 1/2 cup of lentils, 1/4 cup on quinoa, 1 tsp of garlic powder, 1/2 tsp of chili powder, 1/2 tsp paprika, 1/2 tsp of cumin into the jar.  On the cook day, put it all in the crock pot with 2 cups of water, set it to low, and let it cook for 6-8 hours.  When it done, stir it around for a bit to get the flavors blended, but try to break as few of the lentils as possible.  Then just scoop it into tortillas with your favorite taco toppings.  Mine are cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomato, and salsa.

Spaghetti Sauce – Really the best way to do this is cook up a huge batch of sauce, freeze it in zip lock bags layed flat, then leave it in the sink before leaving for work.  Once home, it will be thawed out to be reheated and pasta of any kind added.  Four medium cans of diced tomatoes, one small can of tomato paste, two tablespoons of dried basil, five cloves of crushed garlic.  Put everything in a large pan, or a crock pot, and cook until it’s thick.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Let cool and divide evenly into quart sized zip lock bags.  I used this as a starter for other spaghetti sauces, and for gazpacho soup.

Thai Curry – 1 medium onion chopped, one bell pepper seeded and cut into strips, four cloves of garlic chopped, one tablespoon of fresh ginger chopped or grated, three tables spoons of red curry paste, 3-4 cups of squash chopped into one inch cubes.  Freeze all this.  On the day, put all in the crock pot with a half cup water, one can of non-sweet coconut milk, and one tablespoon of soy sauce.  Set to low and cook about six hours.  Serve over rice (minute rice if you’re in a hurry) with fresh cilantro over the top and a squeeze of lime juice.

Barbeque Tofu – In a jar, mix 1 1/2 cups ketchup, 3 tablespoons brown sugar, 1 tablespoon soy sauce, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar, 1 tablespoon red pepper flakes, and 1/2 tsp garlic powder.  Store in the fridge until you need it, but no longer than a week.  Also, cut two pounds of extra firm tofu with the water squeezed out into one inch cubes and put into a zip lock bag and freeze.  On the day put it all in the crock pot and set at low for 6-8 hours.  Serve on buns with any extra condiments you like.

All Veggie Chili – Cook this when you have time and freeze the rest.  Make your favorite chili recipe and substitute extra beans for the meat, or add textured vegetable protein, or even extra firm tofu.

Well, I hope that gives her a start, and sets her own brain buzzing about adapting recipes for her needs.



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