your very favorite, 'throw together' meal.... - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 27 Old 06-16-2008, 12:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Im trying to gather a list for myself of really good, relatively easy (doesnt necessarily have to be 'quick'...) healthy meals/recipies.

I prefer no dairy, but I can do dairy, or can improvise, definitely looking for vegetarian.

Meal ideas do NOT come easily to me. : (not one of those 'wake up in the morning and start thinking about what I can do for dinner' types...though I WISH I was!!)

thanks in advance!!:
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#2 of 27 Old 06-16-2008, 01:31 AM
 
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spaghetti is the easiest to make on a whim

also:

Taco Salad
Noodles in "cheese"
nut burgers (from a mix I get in the bulk section at WFS)
Soup

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#3 of 27 Old 06-16-2008, 02:20 AM
 
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I made it tonight!

I chop up a bunch of veggies, garlic and ginger, and saute. Dump a little tamari on that. Add a can of coconut milk, some red curry paste, and ~1/2 cup peanut butter. Add sriracha if you like more spice. Mix with cooked Chinese noodles. Really easy, really good. Great for using up whatever.

We also do a similar thing but omit the peanut butter and noodles, and serve the coconut curry veggies over rice.

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#4 of 27 Old 06-16-2008, 03:09 PM
 
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Stone Soup

A potato and whatever other veggies are around: onion, celery, carrots, peas, green beans, tomatoes. Chop everything up and put it in a pan of water. Cook for about 20 minutes. Salt and pepper. Great soup.

Kathi

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#5 of 27 Old 06-16-2008, 03:29 PM
 
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Definitely seconding curried vegetables. Miscellaneous veg + curry spices to taste + coconut milk = easy and delicious, if a little inauthentic curry.

If I have a batch of seitan made up, I saute seitan, kale, and soy sauce and make sandwiches/tortillas. It's great with other veggies, too.

I also make fried (dry fried or with just a little oil) tofu. I cook it on each side until it's golden brown then dump in a marinade (usually something I wing) and heat until it's cooked down. This goes great with any number of rice/pasta/veg combos.
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#6 of 27 Old 06-16-2008, 11:00 PM
 
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:
Veggie chili

1/2 cup quinoa
1 cup water
1 jar salsa
2 cans beans of your choice, rinsed
Chili powder and tabasco to taste

Instructions: Dump in a pot together and let simmer 20-30 minutes or until quinoa is cooked and everything is heated through.

Notes: You can do this with bulgur wheat as well, but I like quinoa best.
The salsa is the key to the recipe and makes it super easy and pantry ready; a medium salsa makes a mild chili; mild salsa makes very mild chili. Fruit ones like peach are super yum!
Top with cheese and sour cream or avocado and crushed tortilla chips

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#7 of 27 Old 06-17-2008, 10:56 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks everybody-these are awesome ideas and recipes!


yuuuuuummmm to the curried veggies, midwest and pinksprklybarefoot. Im trying that SOON, (think I need to pick up some curry paste).

and EviesMom--what a GREAT chili idea that is with the salsa. right up my alley!

Dakota's mom-so Ive planned tacos for tomorrow night


one more question for you, midwest, you make your own seitan?? how do you do that? (sorry for my ignorance!)
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#8 of 27 Old 06-17-2008, 11:48 AM
 
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Originally Posted by nancyw View Post
one more question for you, midwest, you make your own seitan?? how do you do that? (sorry for my ignorance!)
Yeah, I really don't like the taste or texture store bought brands of seitan like White Wave, and I've simply found this to be much more affordable.

I'll try to be as concise as possible...
Seitan is traditionally made from whole wheat flour that is repeatedly washed and kneaded until the starches are removed and all that is left is gluten, basically the protein. But, you can hasten the process by simply buying vital wheat gluten (brands like Hodgson Mills and Arrowhead can be found at many large grocery stores).

You can turn your gluten into seitan several different ways including boiling, dry or wet baking, and steaming. Personally, I prefer boiling when it comes to everyday, all purpose seitan, but this can be a tricky method to master for some people. Steaming and baking seem like a great method for when you want something more dense and sausage like, but the general consensus seems to be that they are also much easier to make.

The links I've included are to specific recipes, but the spices can very easily be modified to suit your own personal tastes. You can also modify the texture by experimenting with longer or shorter kneading times and varying the amount of flour or cooking times. The basic methods are what is important.

Also, I would almost never recommend eating seitan straight after making it. It is advisable to cook it a second time, as you would with any store bought version.
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#9 of 27 Old 06-17-2008, 12:19 PM
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http://www.veganlunchbox.com/loaf_studio.html

Endless possibilities. At first I was reluctant to try a vegan loaf, but it was so good and so nutritious. I served it with bottle miso gravy and roasted veggies.
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#10 of 27 Old 06-18-2008, 12:45 AM - Thread Starter
 
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midwest, thank you so much for all the details, and for the links. the boiling and baking links are excellent--I think I can do those! (well, especially the baking one) the steaming one comes up, but the recipe part doesnt for some reason, so Im going to google steaming. thank you!!

cjr, what a cool site! and thank you for the suggestion about the miso and veggies to make it a whole meal!
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#11 of 27 Old 06-23-2008, 01:50 PM
 
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This is so totally easy, it is ridiculous. I make it for myself on the days DH cooks and it is gross or, worse, not vegan.

Saute an onion, add a can of rinsed and drained black beans. Let warm through and serve with store bought mango salsa (not mango chutney although that would probably taste fine too). If I have time, I make some rice to go with it. Otherwise I just eat it with a veggie.

Tastes great reheated in a wrap for lunch the next day too.

You'd need 2 cans for a family of 4-6.

Me (42), DH (41), DD (7), DS1 (5) and DS2 Aug 02/09
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#12 of 27 Old 06-23-2008, 02:18 PM
 
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One of our new favorites is lemony garlc beans. Sautee some garlic in a little olive oil. Throw in a can of white beans & a little water or veg broth. Mash up the beans a little & add in a squeeze of lemon & some chopped parsley. So yummy!

We also do alot of veggie tacos. Sautee any mix of zuchini, onion, bell peppers, mushrooms or whatever else you have on hand with some taco seasoning. Heat up a can of beans & some tortillas and you're all set. A variation of that is to dice the veggies & add some corn, a can of diced tomatoes & a can of black bean. Then serve over a warm grain, I perfer brown rice or quinoa.

Then when all else fails we do frozen veggie patties. Original Gardenburgers are our favorites

ETA: If you make some seitan, slice some & let it simmer a bit in lots of BBQ sauce & serve on hamburger buns. Sooooo yummy!!

Cheryl, wife to an amazing man, homeschooling SAHM to Gavin 12/03, Rhys 09/06, and Ian Aug 11, 2010.

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#13 of 27 Old 06-24-2008, 06:08 AM
 
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Originally Posted by 143Midwest View Post
.

If I have a batch of seitan made up, I saute seitan, kale, and soy sauce and make sandwiches/tortillas. It's great with other veggies, too.
I just started dabbling with seitan and i cant get over the unique flavor. I have boiled it and baked it and havent enjoyed either much. My husband enjoys it but i just cant get over the fact that it tastes like grapenuts to me.. is this just me or am i expecting too much of a meaty taste out of it?
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#14 of 27 Old 06-24-2008, 10:52 AM
 
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Well, seitan is a wheat based product, so a lot of people do notice a bit of breadiness (I say much more so when baked, but some people much prefer it that way). Personally, grapenuts isn't exactly what I get off it, but no matter how you cook it the biggest thing that will impact flavor is what you put in it seasoning wise and what you cook it in in the future (would not generally recommend just eating seitan straight like a plain chicken breast). I also think seitan taste gross if you don't cook it a second time (cooking the gluten into seitan being the first).

That being said, perhaps it's just not the protein for you. I really do think most people who don't like tofu just haven't had it prepared right, but really there are just some people who no matter what will not enjoy the flavor or textures it provides. Likewise with seitan.
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#15 of 27 Old 06-24-2008, 02:25 PM
 
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Seitan makes for awesome (and relatively quick) gyros! I have the Vegan Vittles recipe and really enjoy it.

I also make quick "bean wraps" by mixing pintos with taco seasonings and throw in a tortilla with whatever sounds good (leftover brown rice, salsa,onion,lettuce,zucchini,carrot, etc).

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#16 of 27 Old 06-24-2008, 07:17 PM
 
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I thought of another one that I don't think has been mentioned...veggie pasta. Sautee veggies (broc, mushrooms, red peppers, green beans, onions, greens etc) in olive oil with some (or if you are like me LOTS of) garlic. Boil noodles. Add some of the pasta cooking water to the veggies to make a sauce. Then mix in some nutritional yeast. Stir it all together :

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#17 of 27 Old 06-24-2008, 08:28 PM
 
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Originally Posted by nik_907 View Post
it tastes like grapenuts to me.. is this just me or am i expecting too much of a meaty taste out of it?
When we boil it in broth, it tastes just like the broth. You might like the pepperoni version from Vegan Vittles.

Do you have any way to check on the age of your flour? You might be tasting stale-ness.

Have fun dabbling!
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#18 of 27 Old 06-25-2008, 02:36 PM
 
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Black Bean avocado burritos. It's not quick, because you have to cook the rice. But when the rice is done, you just throw together black beans, corn, salsa, lemon juice and diced avocado. http://allrecipes.com/Recipe/Val-and...ip/Detail.aspx
Put rice in burrito shells, top with avocado mix, and voila!

btw, if you fold the burrito shell in half, then half again (to make an ice cream cone shape) it's much easier for little hands to hold. It's how I do my burritos now!

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#19 of 27 Old 06-26-2008, 12:32 AM
 
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when in doubt, stir fry! saute garlic and maybe ginger in olive oil. add tofu if you want, or cut up veggies, starting w/ those that take longest to cook first.

serve with jasmine rice or brown rice. also, you can sub some of the water for the jasmine rice w/ coconut milk instead - mmmm.

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#20 of 27 Old 06-26-2008, 03:49 AM
 
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Originally Posted by nancyw View Post
Im trying to gather a list for myself of really good, relatively easy (doesnt necessarily have to be 'quick'...) healthy meals/recipies.

I prefer no dairy, but I can do dairy, or can improvise, definitely looking for vegetarian.

Meal ideas do NOT come easily to me. : (not one of those 'wake up in the morning and start thinking about what I can do for dinner' types...though I WISH I was!!)

thanks in advance!!:
If you eat eggs--a veggie omelet. If not, then a tofu scramble with lots of veggies. Cook the veggies first so they are hot.
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#21 of 27 Old 06-26-2008, 01:24 PM
 
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crock pot lasagne
chili
hay stacks
taco salad
burritos
chalupas
stir fry
lentil soup with flatbread
sandwiches
pasta primavera
pizza
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#22 of 27 Old 06-26-2008, 07:47 PM
 
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#23 of 27 Old 06-26-2008, 07:50 PM
 
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crock pot lasagne
chili
hay stacks
taco salad
burritos
chalupas
stir fry
lentil soup with flatbread
sandwiches
pasta primavera
pizza
Do you have a recipe for crock pot lasagne or do you just make it like you would for the oven, but in the cp instead?

Cheryl, wife to an amazing man, homeschooling SAHM to Gavin 12/03, Rhys 09/06, and Ian Aug 11, 2010.

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#24 of 27 Old 06-26-2008, 09:16 PM
 
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Bean dip is always good in a pinch, especially when we are craving something snacky/salty, but yet totally filling for dinner.

Take a can of refried beans, or drained pinto or black beans and whir them in a food processor with a can of drained tomatoes (Rotelle is great for this). You can add whatever spices you like, I like chili powder, cumin, coriander and a little garlic. Put the bean dip in a big bowl and top with shredded soy cheese. Microwave until the cheese is melty then top with chopped scallions, black olives, cilantro, whatever you like. Serve with tortilla chips. Yummy!

Mommy to DS Adrian 8/10/04 and DD Geneva 9/02/09
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#25 of 27 Old 06-27-2008, 12:04 AM
 
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quesadillas - salsa, cheese (pretty optional, you can use veg refried beans to hold everything together instead), veggies sauteed until soft...mmm.

Also, spaghetti - a can of tomato puree, mixed w/ veggies (zuchini, chopped broccoli, spinach, onions, carrots, whatever) sauteed w/garlic and italian spices (basil, oregano, thyme, etc). It takes about as long to cook as the noodles take to boil!
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#26 of 27 Old 06-27-2008, 12:05 AM
 
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Do you have a recipe for crock pot lasagne or do you just make it like you would for the oven, but in the cp instead?
Yup, it works better with the oval ones than the round ones. You have to break up the noodles to fit, but it works. My recipe is for 6-8 hours on low.
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#27 of 27 Old 06-27-2008, 02:30 AM
 
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I love this Red Beans and Rice with Pesto recipe from Cooking Light because it can be made with all pantry/freezer ingredients so I can always have the stuff for it on hand. Substitute veg broth, of course. And for pantry friendly, use canned tomatoes and frozen chopped onions. Or, of course, you can take your time with it and do homemade pesto, cook your own beans, etc.
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