Mushroom Lentil Stew Over Mashed Potatoes
This mushroom lentil stew will have your meat lovers thinking they are eating a hearty meaty meal. It is a perfect dinner on a wintery night. While it is hearty and meaty, the meaty part is the combination of lentils and mushrooms. No meat involved.
My life right now is about keeping it simple and quick. This recipe fills the bill. It can be made in 30 or so minutes. Mushrooms are a quick pick up from the grocery. I always have little yellow potatoes in the pantry. They are easy to half and I don’t have to peel. The rest of the ingredients should be in the pantry.
Mushroom lentil stew over mashed potatoes is vegetarian. I’m sure it can be made vegan with some adjustments. For right now I’m happy using soy sauce, butter, and milk in small quantities. I make my own mashed potatoes which is just boiling halved baby yellow potatoes in salt water for 25 mins, draining, adding salt/pepper, butter, milk, then mashing. Or you can buy ready made potatoes. Up to you.
This meal is stick to your ribs comfort food. It is now in our regular rotation and wanted by my guys. Need more plant-based recipes, then go here.
- 1 Tbsp olive oil
- 1/2 cup chopped shallot
- 2 cups sliced baby Bella, cremini or button mushrooms
- 1-2 Tbsp low sodium soy sauce
- Pinch Kosher salt
- Generous turn of the pepper grinder
- 2 Tbsp chopped fresh thyme or 2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 2/3 cup dry green lentils, rinsed and drained
- 2-3 cups vegetable broth
- 1 Tbsp tomato paste
- Add oil to a large pan over medium heat
- Sauté shallot until soft, stirring occasionally
- Add mushrooms and soy sauce increasing heat to medium-high
- Sauté for 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add a pinch of salt and pepper
- Add thyme, lentils, and 2 cups vegetable broth.
- Bring to a low boil over medium-high heat then reduce heat to a simmer and cook on low for about 20 minutes, adding more broth as needed if the mixture looks dry.
- Make Mashed Potatoes
- Add potatoes to a large pot and cover with water so they are just submerged
- Bring to a boil on high heat and cook for 25 minutes
- Drain potatoes then add back to pot
- Season with salt, pepper, butter, and milk mashing until tender and fluffy.
Okra Tomato Curry or Bhindi Masala
Okra. I have always been curious about this strange and odd vegetable. A totally foreign vegetable to me. It is very common in the southern part of the United States where it is breaded and deep-fried served with ranch dressing. It can be tasty. I have had it in Indian restaurants and honestly, I prefer the Indian preparation method over the breading and deep-frying.
I came across a package of okra at the Food Lion. I could not resist it and purchased it without really giving much thought as to how I was going to prepare it. All I thought it would be perfect to make for Meatless Monday.
The recipe is a straightforward curry. It does have a bit of bite in a good way. You can leave out the red pepper if you think it will be too spicy for you. Be careful of the salt and use it carefully or it will be too salty to truly enjoy. Cooking the okra until the edges are brown prevents the slime, which is very unpleasant when eating okra that is not prepared well. To counter the very strong flavors of Okra Tomato Curry, I would add a creamy dish such as Veggie Korma and some rice or naan bread.
Okra Tomato Curry Recipe
- 1 tsp oil
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- ½ tsp cumin seeds
- 1 medium onion thinly sliced
- 1 green chili, finely chopped
- 2 tablespoons minced garlic
- 1 tablespoon squeezable ginger
- 2.5 cups chopped Okra
- ¼ tsp turmeric
- ¾ tsp coriander powder
- Pinch of red pepper
- 14.5 oz can diced tomatoes
- 2 tsp tomato paste
- ¼ cup water
- ½ tsp salt
- Handful chopped cilantro
- Pinch of garam masala
- Heat oil in a skillet over medium heat.
- Add mustard and cumin seeds cooking until they start to pop or change color.
- Add the onion, chili, garlic, ginger and cook until translucent.
- Add okra and a small pinch of salt.
- Cook for 10 minutes or until golden on some edges.
- Stir occasionally. Doing this will allow the edges of okra to dry out a bit will seal in the slime.
- Add spices, tomato, tomato paste, salt, and water.
- Cover and cook for 6-10 minutes.
- Taste and adjust salt and spice.
- Stir in cilantro.
- Sprinkle a pinch of garam masala then mix well.
Slow Cooker Vegetable Red Lentil Soup
Slow cooker vegetable red lentil soup is what you make when your veggie bin in the fridge is fuller than it needs to be. That was the case with my bin this morning. I had some veg that needed to be used before it had to go to the compost bin. Not that it was rotten, but you know what I mean. I hope.
Anyway, I have not made a veggie soup in ages, so I thought today why not? I got a late start of it and did not get it into the slow cooker until after lunch. I was a bit worried since my red lentils (or dal) have lost some of their color. That doesn’t mean they are bad, but just old and may take longer to cook. Simple ingredients for this soup and I used what I had on hand: onions, celery, potatoes, zucchini, canned tomatoes, fresh thyme, bay leaves, cabbage, and vegetable broth. Vegetable soups are so versatile that they can be a big of a dump meal with what’s on hand. I sautéed the onion and celery first in olive oil until softened giving it a little extra flavor.
Slow Cooker Vegetable Red Lentil Soup Recipe
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 yellow onion diced
- 2-3 celery stalks diced
- 3-4 carrots diced
- 1 large zucchini sliced and quartered
- 2-3 potatoes peeled and diced small
- 3/4 cup red lentils
- 1 14.4 oz. petite diced tomatoes
- 1-2 pieces Parmesan cheese rind
- 2 bay leaves
- 4-6 sprigs fresh thyme
- 5 cups vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon kosher salt
- Generous grinds of the pepper mill
- 1 small thinly sliced savoy cabbage
- Fresh Italian parsley chopped finely
- Olive oil to drizzle
- Parmesan cheese
- Heat oil over medium heat in pan. Sautée onion and celery until soft. (If you are in a rush then by-pass this step)
- Place onion, celery, carrots, zucchini, potatoes, Parmesan rind, tomatoes, lentils, thyme, salt, pepper, and broth in the slow cooker.
- Set slow cooker to high for 6 hours.
- Add the cabbage with about 2 hours left.
- Remove thyme stalks and bay leaves.
- Drizzle olive oil, sprinkle with parsley and cheese.
Simple and Fresh Cookless Tomato Sauce
Yes, you read that correctly a cookless tomato sauce. Tomato sauce is often thought of as something that simmers on the stove for hours on a Sunday afternoon. Not so. This is a much lighter version of the traditional cooked tomato sauce. Like the traditional sauce, this uses fresh ingredients. In fact, this recipe for cookless tomato sauce has only six ingredients: tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and basil.
Cookless Tomato Sauce
- 12 oz angel hair or thin spaghetti
- 1 1/2 pounds fresh tomatoes, quartered
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1-2 cloves garlic chopped
- 3/4 salt
- A couple of turns of the pepper grinder
- A bunch of fresh basil
- Grated Parmesan Cheese
- Cook the pasta according to the directions
- In a food processor or blender, combine the tomatoes, olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper, and basil. Pulse until combined.
- Toss the pasta with the tomato sauce topping with Parmesan cheese and chopped basil.
Vegan Eggplant Chickpea Curry
Chickpeas are one of my favorite ingredients. And I adore eggplant. Put them together with a curry base and you have eggplant chickpea curry. Pretty good, right?
The base of a curry varies. This curry is tomato-based with ground cumin, yellow curry powder, ground turmeric, garam masala, and salt with a little water added to create paste. From there you can add various vegetables or meat to it as well as broth or water.
People are often afraid of cooking Indian or other Asian food. They are afraid of all the spices. They should not be. Once you have the basic ingredients such as ground cumin, yellow curry powder, ground turmeric, and garam masala in your pantry then you can create a diverse meal of dishes. Indian and Asian spices are now becoming common in many supermarket chain’s spice aisles such as Food Lion. I would suggest if you are going to make a lot of Indian or Asian dishes that you find an Asian grocery store. For me, I need to travel between 60 to 90 minutes to a good Asian grocery store, but it is worth it to get large quantities of spices for a lot cheaper than your local grocery store. Plus, it is a wonderful cultural experience.
Need other dishes? Try my recipe for Lazy Vegetable Korma or Slow Cooker Aloo Gobi.
Eggplant Chickpea Curry
- 2 teaspoons olive or vegetable oil
- 1 medium sized yellow onion, diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 teaspoon curry powder
- ½ teaspoon ground turmeric
- ¼ teaspoon garam masala
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1 medium eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 14.5 oz cans of diced tomatoes, draining some of the liquid beforehand
- 1 14.5 oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- A bunch of cilantro leaves, chopped
- Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat.
- Add the onion cooking until tender.
- Add the garlic cooking until fragrant.
- Stir in the cumin, curry, turmeric, garam masala, and salt, as well as a few tablespoons of water, mixing together and create a paste.
- Add the eggplant, tomatoes, chickpeas, and broth.
- Bring the mixture to a boil and reduce it to a simmer covering for 15 minutes.
- Uncover the curry and cook it for another 15-20 minutes, or until the liquid has reduced and the eggplant is soft.
- Add cilantro leaves.
Serve with naan or rice. Or both.