Wednesday, April 10, 2013

VeganMac and Beans


This is one of the first vegan dishes my mother-in-law ever made when I joined the family. Back then I was not a vegetable eater and I didn't like my foods 'mixed' together, meat was here, potatoes there and never the two should meet. Soups used to kind of freak me out, and if the veggies were cut too big - no thanks! But as life would have it, I slowly learned to like my vegetables and dishes like this have a lot to do with that.

If you look at VeganMac as an adult, it may seem too simple, peasant food perhaps. However, if you see it through a child's eyes, while it has vegetables mixed together and touching each other, is not too foreign or colorful and there aren't too many unusual textures. With this theory in mind I asked my youngest what she thought of supper and her answer was just as I expected, "It's good, I like that there aren't too many things in it, like the beans are just regular, and everything else is cut up little, and the macaroni is the kind I like." VeganMac meets a kid's comfort level (or adults who have yet to mature into liking their vegetables.) It isn't fancy but it is satisfying, provides protein and is quick to throw together. I have had requests just for this type of meal, so here you have it:

VeganMac with Beans

1 pound cooked elbow macaronni (or pasta of choice)

4 Tablespoons margarine or olive oil
2-3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 large onion, chopped
2 medium carrots, chopped
1/4 -1/2 cup vegetable broth, we use Better than Bouillon No Chicken Base
2 cans Great Northern beans (Or use dry beans: soak 1 lb of Great Northern beans overnight, then simmer slowly for 2 hours or until tender.)
2 medium tomatoes,chopped or 1 can petite diced
1/2 cup chopped parsley
1 Tablespoon basil
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1-1 1/2 teaspoons salt to taste
1/2 teaspoon black pepper


  1. Cook macaroni a minute shy of the recommended al dente instructions on the package. 
  2. In a large skillet over medium heat add oil and quickly saute garlic and onions to coat. 
  3. Add the carrots and vegetable broth, simmering over medium low heat until the carrots are cooked through. Combine beans and tomatoes, allowing everything to come up to heat.
  4. Add in all remaining ingredients along with the cooked macaroni, toss to coat and make sure everything is hot. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

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