Wednesday, April 27, 2005

The Harried Vegetarian Cook

Soccer season is in full swing. All four of my kids play for the town and my two oldest just made the school soccer team. Just to make things interesting, I added 5 more classes to my work schedule. This makes for a really hectic time in our house and our meals are showing the strain. The temptation to order takeout is intense.

At the same time, the bills still need to be paid. Plus we've set our budget to allow me to take the summer off and just be with the kids. There's not a lot of room for error with summer only two months off. I needed some quick, easy meals that have holding power tucked away in the freezer.

Lat night I took out my huge stockpot (it looks like a cauldron!) It barely fits on my stove. I made a huge batch of what we jokingly call High Octane Tomato Sauce. Its a "whatever I have on hand" recipe with one important ingredient, yellow split peas to add some protein and holding power. I had lots of onions and carrots in the fridge so in they went with quite a few cloves of garlic. I sauteed everything until the onions were translucent and then poured in a number 10 can of organic tomato sauce and the yellow split peas (already cooked-the acid of the tomato will not allow the beans to soften.) I added a little water to thin it and some greens (my daughter and I have reached an agreement, she will eat the dandelion greens as long as we only call them greens.)

I let the whole thing simmer for a few hours and then ran batches through the blender to smooth it all out. This is not imperative if you chop the greens but I was in a hurry and the blender was quicker.

When the dishes were all cleared away, I had 9 containers of sauce in the freezer for other hectic nights. Now we are only a pot of boiling water (for past to go with the sauce) away from a hot meal on a hectic night. BTW, I also used the sauce on last nights dinner.

More ideas on quick meals will be coming up. Right now, I have potatoes in the slow cooker. I'm curious to see how that turns out.


Tommy Goat said...

Hi FVM . .

Any ideas for breakfasts? Either something I can make without too much fuss in the morning, or something I can make a big batch of on Sunday and use throughout the week?

; )


Katie said...

I'm a fan of making a big batch of something like banana bread, pumpkin bread or scones on Sunday and using it for the week.

Muffins work really well also. The trick is to make sure that the recipe you are using is packed with good nutrition and not just sugar and white flour.

I'll post my favorite breakfast recipes next time.