Wednesday, July 24, 2013

"That Mexican Thing" a.k.a. Southwest Veggie and Okra Stew with bonus rice recipe

So wow....I haven't posted in a bit over 2 months.  I kind of feel bad.  Did any of you miss me?  Or miss my food at least?

Well, here I am, back again with a recipe that I've made a couple of times now and it always turns out pretty delicious.  Plus, it's insanely easy.  It's based on a recipe that I found hand-written in messy scrawl on a scrap of paper and tucked inside one of my cookbooks.  I suspect that my ex boyfriend/good friend Andy found it on the internet and wrote it down because I vaguely remember him making something yummy with okra in it for me once.  Well, I have no idea where he got it or why it was in one of my cookbooks, but I found it, tweaked it, and here it is for your enjoyment.

It's a called "stew" because I've been serving it with rice, but it would also be good stuffed into tacos or a burrito or just dipped into with some crunchy tortilla chips, so it's really versatile; hence around our house we've just been referring to it as "that Mexican thing."  I've also included  a recipe for cheater "Spanish rice" when, dammit, you're just too lazy to put any effort into it.  Serve them both together for a quick, easy, and veggie-ful meal.  The rice recipe is below the main recipe.

"That Mexican Thing" or Southwest Veggie and Okra Stew


2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 onion, diced
1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
2 teaspoons cumin
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon chili powder
dash of cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup corn kernels
4 cups sliced okra
16 ounce can vegetarian refried beans
1/2 can water
1 Tablespoon cornstarch
1/2 cup nutritional yeast
1/2 cup chopped cilantro

chopped avocado, tomato, onion, cilantro

Heat the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.  Add the minced garlic, onion, jalapeno, and bell pepper.  Cook for 4 minutes until the vegetables begin to soften.  Add the spices and salt and cook for 30 seconds.  Add the corn, okra, and refried beans.  Fill the can up again halfway with water, add the cornstarch, and mix with a fork until the lumps are dissolved.  Add the water and cornstarch mixture into the pot.  Bring to a boil.  Boil gently for 3-4 minutes until the beans form a thick sauce.  Turn off the heat and stir in the nutritional yeast and cilantro.
Garnish individual servings with more chopped cilantro, avocado, tomato, and onion.  Enjoy!

Tips and Tricks:

1. Use frozen corn kernels and frozen pre-sliced okra to save time.

2. Make sure to check your refried beans to make sure they are vegetarian - some are made with lard; ew!

3. Serve with Cheater Spanish Rice (recipe below)

Cheater Spanish Rice


2 cups hot cooked rice (white or brown)***
1 Tablespoon non-dairy butter (optional)
1/2 cup of your favorite jarred salsa

Mix together.  That's it!

*** Use quinoa or couscous or any other kind of grain to change things up a bit!

That's all for now; hope you enjoy :)  Recipes soon for my homemade vegan mayo and creamy cashew dip, a.k.a. "Awesome Sauce."

Also, I'm adopting my very own doggy from the animal shelter on Friday, so pics of him/her soon to come as well!  Until then....much love and happy vegan tummies!


The Fur Ninja <3

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