Saturday, September 13, 2014

VeganMoFo Day 13 - Summer Stew

After this meal I didn't want to see another zucchini for a long time!

This one comes from the September 2011 McDougall newsletter. If anyone still has a bunch of zucchini around from their home gardens, Heather just did a whole newsletter of zucchini recipes this past July.


Preparation Time: 30 minutes
Cooking Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 6-8

1 ¼ cups water
2 onions, sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
6 small zucchini, sliced ½ inch thick
4 small yellow crookneck squash, sliced ½ inch thick
1 green or red pepper, coarsely chopped
2 cups snow peas, trimmed and left whole
3 cups tomato chunks
2 cups corn kernels
3 tablespoons soy sauce
Seasonings (see note under hints)
1 tablespoon cornstarch

Sauté onions and garlic in ½ cup water in a large saucepan. Cook until soft, about 5 minutes.

Add both kinds of summer squash, green or red pepper, snow peas, and tomatoes, plus another ½ cup water. Cover and simmer over medium heat for 15-20 minutes. Stir occasionally.

Add corn and chosen seasonings. Simmer an additional 10 minutes.

Mix cornstarch in ¼ cup cold water. Gradually add to stew while stirring. Cook and stir until thickened.

Serve hot over whole grains.

HINTS: This is a very low calorie stew. It is delicious with many different seasonings. Choose one of the four seasoning mixtures here, or use your own favorites.

1. 1 teaspoon turmeric, 1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin, 1 teaspoon curry powder, 1 tablespoon chopped fresh cilantro.
2. 1 teaspoon dried basil or 1 tablespoon fresh basil, chopped, 1 teaspoon dried oregano or 1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped, 1 tablespoon parsley, chopped, dash lemon juice.
3. ½ teaspoon basil, 1 teaspoon dill weed, 1 teaspoon paprika
4. ½ teaspoon thyme, ½ teaspoon rosemary, ½ teaspoon marjoram, ½ tablespoon Dijon mustard.

Let me explain my changes:

Our stores don't know the meaning of the words "small zucchini" so I bought 6 of the smallest I could find and wound up using only 4, because otherwise it would be just too much zucchini.

None of us are fans of snow peas (those strings like to attack us when we least expect it) so I just used a bag of frozen peas.

For the seasonings, Simon and Garfunkle kept popping in my head (It does that a lot when I cook) and I had to go with the last option. I know, I know, there's no parsley or sage, but the earworm stopped as soon as I finished cooking.

Like this guy, I, too, still have my LP of this album, and when really nostalgic or depressed still play it. Otherwise, I just pop the CD in. There's something about the pops and hisses that soothe the soul.

Back to the stew.

As you an see, there was so much green zucchini you can't even find the yellow squash in the pot! 

I always have a problem getting things to thicken. I added a bit more cornstarch after the initial amount, but even after rapidly boiling for a while it never really thickened to my satisfaction. Maybe I just have too high expectations in wanting the stew liquid to be the thickness of gravy. But it was still mighty tasty. I served this over some brown rice. We each had one big, one smaller serving and I still had enough to put away for lunches the next 2 days.

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