I thought, since I’m at home this week, I’d make most of the dinners. I am, however, a rather lazy cook and often look for things that are simple, easy and will last a while (or so I hope). So crockpot/slow cooker recipes as well as large stew/soup recipes are favourites of mine. It also helps stretch that ever shrinking dollar. K and I had been talking about what soups she likes and she does sorta like Amy’s Black Bean but said that often they lack a “omph” as far as flavour/spicyness goes. So I thought why not make a nice spicy black bean soup for her? The internet happens to be my favourite recipe book ever. And in my searches I found this simple recipe: Black Bean Vegetable Soup. I pretty much stuck to the recipe with two exceptions:
- I used a slow cooker at the end rather than a soup pot. I stuck it on low and let it simmer away for a couple of hours. The apartment smelled great!
- I add in some cajun spices my aunt gave me over the holidays. Lots of ’em!
It wasn’t enough to cure K’s cold but was good enough for her to have two huge bowls of it. The recipe technically feeds 8 but I think K ate enough for 4! (I also had two small bowls myself along with some bread and vegan mayo I made). K’s cold, however, got worse over night and she canceled a date with a dear friend to stay at home in bed. Of course, everyone knows what the fix is for that: chicken soup. But since we’re vegan, that’s a definite no-no so I searched for some nice vegan “chicken” soups. And found this one on About.com. Again, I stuck with the recipe as is but made a few minor changes:
The local grocery stores have “vegetable soup kits” in their produce aisle. I got one that cost me about $3.25 and had all the basics needed for soup: turnip, leek, onion, celery, fresh basil, fresh parsley, carrots, parsnip. I used that to replace some of the ingredients listed. I added a couple of potatos.
- Used pre-minced garlic and added a couple of large slices of ginger
- Used Whitewave StirFry Seitan Strips and coated them with salt and pepper (next time will marinate over night in No Chicken Broth)
- Used 8 cups of No Chicken Broth
- Used 2 cups of vegan vegetable sea salt and herb bouillon
- Add a couple of sprigs of fresh thyme to the parsley/basil bundle
- ground in the fresh pepper and added in about another 1-2 tsp of black pepper
- added sea salt
- added cajun spice (about 1-2 teaspoons)
- used 2 tbsps sunflower oil (didn’t have any olive oil on hand)
- let it simmer for two hours and served with saltines (salted kind)
- added 2 cups of water after removing the bundle
This is comfort food. It’s not about diets and losing weight. And it definitely seemed to help K a bit.