Jeff Smith wasn't lazy, but I am!
November 9, 2008 2:43 PM   Subscribe

Know any freezable and/or crock-pot-able stews that also happen to be vegetarian (or pescatarian) and go well with rice?

I like good food... Unfortunately I also tend to be a bit short on time and cash.
I have me a fancy new-fangled rice cooker, now I'd like to be able to set it before work so that I can come home and zap a stew and throw it on fresh brown rice. What vegetarian or seafood stews can I cook and toss in the freezer? Alternately what stews can I make in a crockpot that consist of mainly canned and frozen goods? Recipes for curries and other spicy delights are especially welcome-I have access to well stocked ethnic markets, so lay it on me!
posted by piedmont to Food & Drink (8 answers total) 33 users marked this as a favorite


2 cans diced tomatos
2 cans tomato paste
1 can black beans
1 can kidney beans
1 can pink beans (aka chili beans)
2 packages smart ground meat substitute (I'm very carnivorous and still use this in my chilis)
1 onion, sliced
Lots of chili powder
Lots of cumin
Lots of garlic
Some basil
Some chili sauce
Salt to taste

Just dump all that in the crock pot. Spices are left variable since I don't know measurements. Just do them all to taste. Save the salt for last and add a little at a time. The one thing I don't like about smart ground is that it's high sodium so it's easy to over salt. If that happens add more beans or tomatoes to dilute. I usually start the crock pot on high heat but turn it down once it starts threatening to boil. NEVER leave the heat on for more than 8 hours, or all your spices will burn off.

I especially like this recipe because the whole crock pot is roughly 2,000 calories over 8-10 servings.
posted by valadil at 3:26 PM on November 9, 2008 [1 favorite]

Split pea soup.

Bag o' split peas,

2 quarts vegetable stock

bit o' garlic,

pound of carrots, washed and diced

salt/pepper/bay leaf/tarragon/ dill to taste.

Toss it all in the crock pot on medium (your temp mileage may vary). It'll be cooked in about 4 hours, but let it go for up to 12 for better flavor.


This works with almost any long cooking bean.
posted by dejah420 at 3:41 PM on November 9, 2008

A Year of CrockPotting. Lots of yummy recipes.
posted by SuperSquirrel at 3:51 PM on November 9, 2008 [5 favorites]

oh, oh, moqueqa! It's a thick, tomatoey, spicy fish stew from Brazil - here's a simple recipe - meant to be eaten over rice. The palm oil and coconut milk are absolutely essential, but you can use pretty much any fish you want - I especially like it with mussels. Add a little fresh-chopped cilantro at the last minute, and go!

You might try Japanese-style curry, too - it comes in little cubes of roux, sort of like boullion cubes. Golden brand is good. Vegetables, meat, roux, water - ideal for crockpot cooking.
posted by peachfuzz at 4:33 PM on November 9, 2008

Quasi-Italian fish stew:

- saute one chopped onion, a stalk or two of celery, and some garlic in a few tablespoons of olive oil.
- add one 14oz can diced tomatoes (with juice, plus a half-can of water) and a pinch of salt.
- add your fish and simmer/poach for a few minutes until fish is cooked through. I usually use cheap frozen cod or the like. White fish seems to work better.
- stir in a big handful of chopped parsley (NOT OPTIONAL!).

I like to put shrimp in mine, also. If you're eating it right away, you can throw the shrimp in in the last minute; if you're going to be reheating this, I would put the (frozen) shrimp in with the stew when you reheat it, since shrimp go from frozen to rubbery so very quickly.

Traditionally, you would not eat cheese with this, but there's no one saying you're not allowed to.
posted by rossination at 4:47 PM on November 9, 2008

the mediterranean is your friend! a mix of onion, garlic, canned tomatoes, eggplant, green pepper, chickpeas, black olives, and raisins or dried apricots with salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, cinnamon and turmeric would be great over couscous for a moroccan feast. use salt, pepper, and curry (omit the fruit and olives) powder for an indian flavor. use paprika instead of cinnamon to give it more of a spanish flavor. use cinnamon and oregano for a greek flavor.
posted by thinkingwoman at 4:51 PM on November 9, 2008 [1 favorite]

I think soups are really made for experimentation. Frozen peas and corn, a can of tomatoes, and a can or two of beans make an excellent base for any vegetarian soup. You can then basically change the nature of the soup using herbs and spices. I say go for experimentation. My favorite tip for veggie stews is to take extra firm tofu, freeze it, then thaw it and squeeze out the excess water. You know have a delicious sponge for soaking up stew-y goodness.

My mom makes a fish soup using a method similar to rossination. The difference is in the vegetables: parsnips, red pepper, loads of carrots and onions, no tomatoes. It's my favorite fish soup ever but I'm biased and habituated to my mom's recipe no doubt. The parsnips and red bell , along with the sauteed onions, give the soup a refreshing sweetness. This soup is *wonderful* with a hunk of warm whole wheat bread, but I even like to eat it cold.

Just so you know, if you're slow cooking these don't add the fish until the last minute. Overcooked fish is sad fish. Really, most fish soups were developed to be cooked quickly, so they don't lend themselves to crockpotting, I think. That said, they are just fine frozen and reheated. This is a non-issue with my mom's fish soup, which so long as I am around never lasts until it would go bad. Back when I was a teen, if we'd had fish soup that's pretty much all I would eat for breakfast lunch and dinner until it was gone.
posted by Deathalicious at 1:32 PM on November 10, 2008 [1 favorite]

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