Lentil & Veggie Stew April 17, 2012

It may be spring and the birds might be chirping, but I still love a hot bowl of comfort food for dinner.  Now that time is of the essence more than ever (hello raving toddler), I have to make something that is quick and delish, and who’s fooling who, I loveeeeeee a stew!!!  I have made variations of this recipe, both in my Le Crueset Dutch Oven and in my slow cooker.  Both are totally yummy.

  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 pounds fresh vegetables cut in bit-sized pieces (I used parsnips, mushrooms, carrots and zucchini)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes
  • 1 can cooked lentils (you can use freshly cooked – about 1 1/2 cups with cooking liquid)
  • 4 cups vegetable broth
  • 1 1/4 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/3 cup uncooked quinoa
  • 2/3 cup pumpkin or squash (canned or cooked – all water pressed out)
  • salt & black pepper to taste


  1. Cook onion in a large, Dutch oven until browned, then add garlic and cook, stirring, for another minute.
  2. Add veggies, broth and spices and cook until vegetables are soft and it begins to boil.
  3. Add quinoa and cook on medium heat until tender (approx. 15 min), then add pumpkin and salt/pepper to taste and cook for 5 more min (adding a little water if too thick).
  4. Serve hot, with shredded cheddar and/or some large crusty bread with butter!


– to use the slow cooker, but all ingredients into cooker and place on low for 6 hours.

– this freezes pretty well too.


Creamy Avocado Pasta January 25, 2008

Filed under: Italiano,Saucey,Veggie Mains — s mcdowall @ 3:14 am
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I have met a few people over the last few years that are allergic to tomatoes (and I thought I had it bad with my intollerence to carrots). In their honour, I give you a super creamy sauce staring … avocadoes! Rich in taste, nutrients and the good fats (mono-unsaturated), this easy pasta sauce goes well with any kind of noodle (and even gnocchi).

1/4 cup butter or margarine, melted
3 green onions, minced
1 clove garlic, minced
2 tbsp minced fresh basil
1 cup dry white wine
3/4 cup minced fresh parsley
1 1/2 cups ricotta or cottage cheese
3 ripe avocados, mashed
Salt and pepper, to taste
1 pound pasta, cooked and drained (I used Whole Wheat Fettuccini)


1. In a heavy-bottomed skillet, over medium heat, melt butter and add green onions, garlic, basil and cook 5 minutes (or until onions are clear and tender).

2. Add wine and parsley, and simmer for 4-5 minutes.

3. Stir in cheese and blend well, continuing to cook until heated through.

3. Add mashed avocado, stirring to combine, and season to taste with salt and pepper.

4. Immediately spoon sauce over cooked pasta of choice and serve.

Optional garnishes – chopped fresh grape/cherry tomatoes or pitted black olives.


Soy Sauce Substitute January 24, 2008

Allergic to soy or wheat, just like me? Here is a great substitute for soy sauce. I can’t believe I didn’t see this earlier! Very exciting indeed.

4 tbsp bouillon (I use veggie obviously, but I suppose you can use chicken or beef if you’re a carnie)
4 tsp balsamic vinegar
2 tsp dark molasses
1/4 tsp ground ginger
1 pinch white pepper
1 pinch garlic powder
1 1/2 cups water


1) In a saucepan over medium heat, stir together all the ingredients.

2) Boil gently until liquid is reduced to about 1 cup (about 15 minutes).

3) Voila! Start enjoying sushi and stir-fries again!