Sunday, November 25, 2007

Biscuit Topped Vegetable Stew

Lucky for me, my mom sometimes buys really good cookbooks but then decides she doesn't want them and so they get passed on to me. The latest one is Veganomicon which is not only full of great recipes but is also really fun to read.

We went shopping for a couple hours this afternoon and it was sleeting by the time we came home. Perfect weather for something that warms up the kitchen and tastes really comforting and old fashioned. I made some slight changes to a recipe called "Leek and Bean Cassoulet with Biscuits".

This meal got a thumb's up from all three of us - something that almost never happens!

Biscuit Topped Vegetable Stew

2 potatoes, cut in 1/2 inch cubes

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 leeks, thinly sliced

1 small onion, diced

1 1/2 cups carrots, cut in 1/2 inch cubes

2 cloves garlic, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh thyme

1 cup green beans, cut in thirds (I used haricots verts - the skinny French green beans)

15 oz can of great northern beans, drained and rinsed

3 cups vegetable broth

3 tablespoons corn starch

Salt and Pepper to taste


3/4 cup soy milk

1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar

1 1/2 cups flour

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 cup shortening

Place the potatoes in a small sauce pan and cover with water. Boil for 10 minutes. Drain and set aside.

In the measuring cup, stir together the broth and cornstarch. Set aside.

In a separate measuring cup, combine the milk and vinegar and set aside (it will look curdled).

In a large iron skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the onions, leeks, and carrots, and cook 10 minutes, until softened and beginning to brown. Add the garlic, thyme, salt and pepper. Cook an additional 2 minutes. Add the potatoes. Raise the heat slightly and stir in the broth and cornstarch mixture. Once it comes to a boil, reduce the heat and simmer 7 minutes.

While the stew is simmering, prepare the biscuits. Combine the flour and baking powder in a medium bowl. Blend the shortening into the dry ingredients so that it looks like crumbs. Stir in the milk/vinegar mixture. Knead lightly a couple times, adding flour if the dough is too sticky.

Once the stew has cooked for 7 minutes, add the white beans. Turn off the heat. Place globs of the biscuit dough on top of the stew about an inch apart. Place the skillet in a 425 degree oven for 15 minutes or until the biscuits are beginning to brown.

Kay: If I was rating this dinner from 1 to 10, I'd give it a 9. I really liked the biscuits. I don't usually like carrots but they tasted good in this. I didn't care for the onions.

Mom (Dana): This recipe looked a little overwhelming at first but I actually enjoyed making it. I prepped everything first which definitely helped. This tastes like something my grandma would have made. Of course hers would have probably had a lot more fat as well as chicken!

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