Curried Vegetable & Chickpea Stew

I want to dislike this recipe.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s really tasty. But that’s kind of the problem. It’s tastier than any vegan dish has a right to be. Yes you read correctly – this post is VEGAN.

It is insanely healthy; I kind of use it as my “detox” meal for when I’ve been eating all kinds of cookies and candy and burgers and other deliciously non-vegan things.

Try it, you’ll like it.

photo(2)

Curried Vegetable & Chickpea Stew

(adapted from The Kitchn)

Ingredients

  • 1 tsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 or 3 large potatoes, diced
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp curry powder
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 2 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 (15 oz) cans chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 red bell pepper, diced
  • 1 medium head of cauliflower, broken into florets
  • 1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper
  • 5-10 oz baby spinach
  • 1 cup coconut milk

Directions

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions with some salt, then add the diced potatoes with a little more salt. Saute until just translucent around the edges.

Stir in the curry powder, brown sugar, ginger, cayenne pepper, and garlic cloves; cook until fragrant. Pour in 1/4 cup of the vegetable broth and scrape the bottom of the skillet to deglaze. Pour the onion/potato mixture into your slow cooker.

Add the rest of the vegetable broth, the chickpeas, both bell peppers, the cauliflower florets, and the diced tomatoes into the slow cooker. Stir to combine then add some salt and pepper; stir some more. Cook on HIGH for 4 hours or LOW for 8 hours.

Just before serving, add spinach and coconut milk. Stir so the spinach wilts. Serve!

Notes

I cheat with this recipe. You’ll notice that the ingredient list is kind of long (at least in my opinion). So I cheat – this time, I bought pre-chopped bell pepper and pre-cut cauliflower, along with the frozen diced onions I use regularly. I KNOW – I am a DISGRACE to COOKING. Whatever. The frozen diced onions have become a habit just because it is so crazy convenient, but I do usually buy fresh bell peppers and chop them myself. This time I didn’t. Oh well.

If you’re anything like me, you will feel really weird eating this stew and keenly feel the absence of cheese and/or cream of some kind. But it’s still good, honestly! It’s detox food.

Cheeseburger Casserole

This is, in my opinion, kind of the ultimate Sconnie Sustenance recipe because it is so unglamorous and unpretentious. It’s fast, easy, delicious, and moderately healthy. We’ve all eaten variations of it as kids. This is easily my favorite quick go-to beef recipe.

photo(1)Cheeseburger Casserole

(adapted from Bakerette)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups uncooked pasta (ideally rotini, but other shapes will work too)
  • 2 tsp canola oil
  • 3/4 cup diced onions
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 lb lean ground beef
  • 1 tsp seasoned salt
  • 2 tbsp ketchup
  • 1 (15 oz) can diced tomatoes
  • 1 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar cheese

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare a 9×9 casserole dish with cooking spray.

Boil the pasta over medium high heat until al dente; set aside.

In a large skillet, pour the canola oil and saute the onions and garlic until soft.  Stir in the ground beef and cook until brown all the way through. If there is fat remaining, drain it. Add the seasoned salt, ketchup, diced tomatoes, and mustard, mixing well. Simmer for a few minutes as it comes together. Add cooked pasta and combine.

Pour the whole thing into your prepared casserole dish and spread around evenly. Top with the shredded cheddar cheese. Bake in the oven for about 15 minutes or until the cheese has melted. Remove and top with pickles, if you’re into that kind of thing, which I am not.

Notes

It’s basically a cheeseburger without the carbs, right? And extremely idiot-proof. And done under 30 minutes, easy. You’re welcome.

The original recipe calls for 1.5 cups of diced onions, which I find excessive. It also calls for “4-5 large Roma tomatoes, deseeded and diced”. Seriously? Just use a can of diced tomatoes! So much less work! To me that just makes sense, but I also use frozen diced onions rather than chopping my own fresh, so that’s where I’m coming from. Less work wins, particularly when you can’t really notice a difference between the finished product of the easy way and the hard way.

Is it REALLY healthy? I mean, it’s not a bowl of quinoa, but I don’t think there’s much to feel bad about here if you use lean ground beef and low-fat shredded cheese – you can also use whole wheat pasta if you really want, but let’s not go crazy.