One of the areas my diet has been lacking is not enough vegetables and too many carbs. This is something that I’ve been trying to rectify, especially with our evening meals. It’s not always easy, as I have little patience for cooking from scratch, plus I don’t always order the right thing from Tesco and then our good intentions fall by the wayside. (Hello Dominos). Plus, while I’m vegetarian, my OH isn’t. I won’t cook meat, mainly because I have completely forgotten how to, plus the feel/sight/smell of it really turns my stomach. So my OH pretty much eats a vegetarian diet at home too as it’s way more convenient. Therefore, whatever we cook has to be filling enough for him too. Purely veg meals just don’t cut it so every recipe is a work in progress. Here’s what we’ve tried this week.
Roast Vegetable Mozzarella Bake
This was a labour of love. It’s not a quick dinner, as you have to let the aubergine sit with salt on for a while, then roast the veg before adding everything all together and baking it. We added a couple of Quorn fillets to give it a bit more meat. I really liked this, despite the aubergine, which isn’t one of my favourite vegetables. However, my OH realised that he doesn’t really like aubergine and promptly vetoed this recipe.
Slow Cooker Chickpea Coconut Curry
This recipe was a long time coming and it was the first time we used our slow cooker, which we inherited from my mum. Because of that, it took me a few days to remember to sort it out at lunchtime. When I finally remembered, it was a joy knowing that dinner was cooking while I was working. No standing over the stove, a real revelation. I was slightly nervous though, not only in case we didn’t like it but also in case the slow cooker didn’t work! We followed the recipe, including the coconut rice. It was lovely and will definitely be a regular on our menu. I don’t think we’ll bother with the coconut rice again though, as it’s a bit of a faff.
I forgot to take a picture of this one, mainly because it took so long to cook, I was almost asleep by the time we ate. We followed the recipe to a T, but we didn’t think the sauce thickened enough in the time it says in the recipe. We cooked it for longer – almost an hour longer. We had couscous with it (I managed to ruin the first batch because I put too much liquid in. Yep.) and I really liked it. My OH did not. Not only was he unhappy by the length of time it took to cook, as I was too, but he doesn’t like a lot of sauce and this had quite a bit. I’m going to cook it again for lunch, but I’ll reduce the liquid by half, I think and see how that goes. Well worth trying though.
I’ve also tried a few new lunches this week, though my favourites are definitely the crustless quiche and lentil & feta salad I wrote about last week.
Warm Harissa Chickpea, Butternut and Courgette Salad
This was quite a brave lunch for me, as I’d never made anything with harissa before. Plus, courgette and I have a love/hate relationship, in that I love it when I can’t taste it! Apart from the courgette, I loved this. I would make it again, but I might switch out the courgette for pepper.
Lentil and Spinach Soup
I’ve recently discovered the deliciousness of lentils and soup so thought this would be a good one to try. I used dried lentils, which I’d never done before, and the recipe called for red lentils, which I forgot to order. Plus, I blended it completely after cooking, because I’m not a fan of lumps – I get a flashback to a vegetable soup ‘incident’ I had as a child. Anyway, it turned out more like a lentil paste. Clearly, I needed to add way more water as I hadn’t prepped the lentils in any way, I just chucked them in. Lesson learned. It was delicious, despite it’s thickness and I’d definitely make it again.
My next recipe challenge will involve tofu. We’ve got one tofu recipe but I want to expand on this a bit and get a few more under my belt. If you’ve got any suggestions or great slow cooker recipes, I’d love to hear them!