I know I should probably start off with an apology for my absence. I kinda had a crazy last few months. From starting a new job to suddenly losing that job and asked to consult for a vegan brand, to relocating my life and trying to just find a darn kitchen to cook in, I just have to say – WTF 2019???!!!! I definitely did NOT sign up for what I endured last year, and VERY happy that year is over.
Ok, that profanity out and off my chest, also I have definitely been cooking but been seeking inspiring dishes to post about. Which leads me to this post as I did a thing: veganized my irish stew recipe.
This stew recipe is not just ANY recipe. It involves hours of slow cooking, searing, and flavour-infusing, combined with precisely cut veg and the perfect mix of seasonings. But, it had meat, and I wanted to give it a shot.
Could I possibly replace my secret, tried and true recipe with a new and improved plant version?
I think I did just that, and am pretty darn pleased.
2 pkgs gardein “Beefless Tips” (found at most large grocers)
5-6 medium sized carrots, peeled and sliced into uniform, 1/2 inch chunks
7-8 yukon gold potatoes, peeled, halved and then cut into uniform chunks
1/2 yellow onion, diced
1 pkg dried assorted exotic mushrooms – rehydrated in 1 cup warm water
1 box vegetable stock
2 sprigs fresh thyme
1 sprig fresh rosemary
2 cloves of garlic
2 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
1 can Guinness beer
small handful fresh parsley
2 cups water
1 cup frozen peas
cornstarch, to thicken
- I highly recommend a slow cooker for this.
- Coat bottom of non-stick pan with olive oil. “saute” Vegan nuggets from frozen for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and coat in cornstarch. Return to pan and add more oil if needed, along with 2 whole cloves of garlic, salt, pepper and sprigs of herbs. Saute the nuggets until crisp and browned, another 5-6 minutes. Pat dry and set aside-leaving herbs and “pan drippings” in your pan.
- turn on crock pot to high setting. Add in chopped vegetables, bay leaf and box of broth along with water. cover and heat for two hours on high.
- Add hydrated mushrooms with the water to the pan you used previously, adding 1-2 tsp of cornstarch. Cook on medium heat until thickened for about 7-10 minutes – or, it is boiling. Slowly add the Guinness, keeping the boil (so do this very slow). turn pan down, and cook for an additional 5-7 minutes, whisking as needed. Remove herb stems. Puree very well the entire mixture with an immersion blender under very smooth. Add vegan margarine if you wish at this stage.
- After 2 hours, add in peas, gardein nuggets, and “Guinness roux”. Stir and salt and pepper to taste.
- Remove stalks from parsley and roughly chop, adding to stew. Cook for additional 1.5-2 hours, depending on your crock pot. Check for doneness but vegetables should be tender and gravy thick. Add any water as required but it should be a hearty dish.
- Serve and enjoy!