Beefless Beef Stew

Once again I am going to post a recipe sans photos. I made this just last night and it came out pretty damned good. I do think next time I will just cube up a block of pressed, extra firm Nasoya tofu instead of using the Gardein Beefless Tips. They were okay, but I think we would like the regular tofu better.

1 bag Gardein Beefless Tips
1 packet of Mrs. Dash Beef Stew Seasoning
2 cups of hot water
2 Edwards & Sons Not Beef bouillon cubes
2 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 small onion, diced
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1/4 cup of red wine
1 can of no salt added diced tomatoes, undrained
2 large red potatoes, cubed
16 oz baby carrots, left whole
2 bay leaves

Drizzle bottom of instant pot with about 2 tbl of extra virgin olive oil and turn on saute function. Once it starts to heat a bit, add onion and garlic, sauteing until they get some color and start to stick. Deglaze pan with red wine. Cook for a couple minutes more to burn off any alcohol. Add bouillon cubes to water and allow to melt into it, whisking well…add worcestershire sauce and tomato paste and whisk well. Turn off the saute function and add the broth mixture, carrots, potatoes and canned tomatoes. Give a good stir and top with the frozen faux beef chunks. Stir it again, pushing most of the beefless chunks down into the mix. Put the lid on the cooker, close the valve and set for 10 min on the stew/meat setting. Once it beeps, allow it to sit for 10 minutes before venting. Enjoy!


Tavern Style Pork Chops

This recipe comes to you sans any photos as I made this a couple weeks ago, but wanted to remember what I did so I can recreate it. Spouse can no longer eat beef, so I am trying to find various ways to create some of his favorite beef dishes with alternatives. This time we have Campbell’s Slow Cooker Sauces that I love using in my instant pot. I just add a cup to a cup and a half of broth to the pot that I would not do in a slow cooker…since the instant pot needs that to come to pressure.

1 package of pork loin chops, any thickness
1-2 cloves of garlic, minced
1-2 tbl of extra virgin olive oil
1 pouch of Campbell’s Slow Cooker Tavern Pot Roast sauce
1/2 cup of unsalted broth, chicken, vegetable, beef, mushroom…whatever you wish
1/2 tbl maggi seasoning or Worcestershire sauce
1/8 cup of red wine (I use cooking wine since I never drink red wines anymore)
Cooked, short grain brown rice (however much you think you need for four servings. I tend to make more than I need in my rice cooker then freeze the leftovers in portioned bags for later meals)
1 bag of birdseye stir fry veggies of any kind
Set instant pot to sauté, add olive oil and minced garlic. Allow garlic to cook a bit…maybe a minute, then sear the chops on each side just until they start to brown a tiny bit. While they are searing, mix broth, maggi or Worcestershire and red wine. Once the chops are seared, remove them from the pot and deglaze with the broth mixture. Do not let too much evaporate, but cook for a minute or so to burn off the alcohol from the wine. Return the chops to the pot and pour the tavern pot roast sauce all over them. Close the instant pot, making sure the steam valve is also closed and set on manual, high pressure for 8 minutes. While this is happening, you can choose your favorite method to steam teh stir fry veg, adding some butter with sea salt to them when done. Once the pot beeps, allow it to do a natural release for 10 min. IE, do not touch the steam release valve for ten min, heh. Serve over brown rice and vegetables with the au jus and chops on top.

Yellow (and green) Squash for me, Yellow (and green) Squash for you!

It is a gorgeous day outside, but despite that I am feeling not quite Chippewa. Core muscles are sore from constant dry coughing due to allergies (thanks tree jizz!) and I have a sinus headache on top of it. Since I had three summer squash and three zucchini that needed cooking, I am currently whipping up a big pot of my favorite comfort food.

Boiled Squash (because I seriously have no other name for it and it is what my mama always called it)

  • 3 zucchini, sliced in half moons
  • 3 summer squash, sliced in half moons
  • 1 small bunch of green onions, diced
  • 2-3 cloves of minced garlic
  • 3 cups of hot or warm water
  • 2 packets of Herb Ox no sodium chicken broth
  • dried dill weed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • drizzle of honey
  • bacon salt if you wish, but if you use it cut back on the salt
  • 2 tbl unsalted butter

Add everything to a big stock pot, bring to a boil then turn heat down and simmer until the squash is almost translucent. I do not know exactly how long this takes as I have never paid any attention to the time, heh.


Once it has finished cooking, add the butter, spices and honey and stir well. Fill a bowl and proceed to stuff into your cake hole.


Grated parmesan is also good in here as well as a can of corn or some frozen corn. Even some beans and bacon bits added with the corn to make a succotash type meal is great. Calling this a recipe is a total stretch, but I wanted to share my favorite comfort food with the internet…though I have a feeling I have shared it on here before. If only all my comfort foods were so calorie friendly…

Orange-Sesame Tofu With Broccoli

In an effort to not only save money with the food bill – IE, stop ordering take out – I have taken to planning a weekly menu of sorts. I pick 7 or 8 online recipes (most of them from the Betty Crocker site lately) based on what meat is on sale for that grocery shopping period. I then make sure I have all the ingredients on hand to make said recipes, if not I simply add them to my shopping list. I have been doing this for over a month now and it seems to be working out fine. Tonight’s offering is one I have wanted to try but was always hesitant since I am super iffy about cooking tofu myself. I usually buy a well seasoned nigiri and make it into baked cutlets, this is the extent of my tofu cookery. However, Betty Crocker rarely steers me wrong so I decided to try this one tonight. Currently the veggies are in the saute phase which means I should be serving very soon. I also think this one would adapt well for chicken, pork or shrimp.

Moroccan Inspired Vegetarian Dish

Just going to cut to the chase and list the recipe this time. (For some reason, this post stayed in my drafts so here you go, a bonus recipe post, heh)


1 medium butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cubed

1 -2 tbl of extra virgin olive oil

1 tbl moroccan kefta spices (you could use a mix of chili, cinnamon, mint, cumin, coriander, paprika and cilantro)

juice of one lime

1 cup of pearl or Israeli couscous

1-1/2 cups of unsalted chicken broth or stock

1/4 tsp of sea salt

1/4 of a red onion, diced

2 cloves of garlic, minced

2 tbl butter

1 – 15 oz can of no salt added diced tomatoes, drained

1 tsp kefta spices

drizzle of red wine vinegar


1/4 cup of low sugar dried cranberries

1/4 cup sliced almonds (toast these beforehand in a hot pan)

drizzle of honey

feta cheese crumbles



Add cubed squash to a large ziploc bag with 1-2 tbl olive oil, kefta spices and the juice of one lime. Close and shake well to coat. Allow to sit and marinate for 15 min before spreading on a cookie sheet and baking in a 400 degree oven for 30 minutes.

Bring stock and salt to a boil in a medium saucepan. Add couscous, reduce heat to a simmer, and cook, covered, until water is absorbed, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 2 – 3 minutes. Fluff gently with a fork.

Saute onion and garlic in a large skillet in the 2 tbl of butter until translucent. Add roasted squash, couscous, 1 tsp of kefta spices, canned tomatoes and a drizzle of red wine vinegar…mix well. Heat through for about 5-8 minutes before adding the cranberries, almonds and drizzle of honey. Mix well and serve, topping each portion with a crumble of feta cheese

Rice, Rice, Baby

I looked up a bunch of recipes for Omurice, a Japanese and Korean comfort food, and then devised my own recipe based on what I researched. This was the result.


Cricket-Style Omurice

1 tbl toasted sesame oil

1 small bunch of scallions, diced

1 lb lean ground beef (you can use ground chicken or pork here as well, any will work)

2 bags of steam in the bag brown rice

1 tbl grated ginger (I always have a jar of fresh grated ginger on hand, but powdered would work too, just use maybe a tsp or two of powdered)

generous squirt of low-sodium soy sauce

generous squirt of seasoned rice vinegar (I used a roasted garlic variety)

decent shake of garlic powder

generous pinch of gochugaru (Korean red pepper flakes…though you can use any red pepper if you wish, or none at all)

1 bag of your favorite frozen mixed veggies (I prefer the traditional mixed veg of carrot, peas, green beans and corn)

1/4 – 1/3 cup of ketchup (I prefer the natural no fructose kind)

beaten eggs


Add sesame oil & diced scallions to a well heated wok pan. Saute for 10 minutes before adding ground beef. Crumble well and add soy sauce, ginger, vinegar, red pepper flakes and garlic when it is almost completely browned. Add steamed rice and mix well, sauteing for another 10 minutes until most of the moisture has cooked away. Add steamed veggies & ketchup, mix again. Remove from heat.

Add one to two beaten eggs to a well oiled omelet pan and allow to cook on both sides.

Serve generous scoops of rice mixture topped with an omelet and additional drizzle of ketchup. It’s fun to use the bottle to draw ketchup designs on the omelet too.

Makes 8 portions. (This is even better the next day, just reheat the rice and make a new omelet)


Leather Britches Banmal

So I dried some Dragon Tongue long beans a while back. They started out looking something like this:dragonbeans

and end up looking something like this:


Today I decided that they had hung next to my computer desk long enough and it was time to see if those hillbillies were right about how delicious these beans are supposed to be, so I created the following recipe.

Wash beans well


and add to a stock pot. Cover with water, add a large bay leaf


and bring to a boil. Once the pot starts boiling, reduce heat, cover and simmer for an hour. Go play a PC game, paint your nails, watch some Korean drama…whatever. Just leave the pot alone for an hour. Once the hour is up, drain the beans well, remove the bay leaf and dry out the pot.


Return pot to the stove and turn the burner to medium. Add 6 slices of center cut bacon (diced) and allow the fat to render well. Once the bacon starts to crisp and you have a nice amount of fat, add half of a diced red onion


Saute for 5-10 minutes until the onions start to caramelize then add two small cloves of minced garlic and a tablespoon of grated ginger. Saute for another 5 minutes before adding the drained beans plus the bay leaf, 2 cartons of unsalted chicken stock and 2 cups of water. Bring back to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for another hour.

Remove pot from the heat and taste to see how salty it is, it should be fairly bland at this point. Next add 1/3 cup of seasoned ssamjang (I like the garlic & sesame stuff) and a tiny dollop of gochujang (you can add more here if you wish, I just cannot eat things too spicy), a drizzle of honey…not too much honey, you don’t want it too sweet, and finally a splash of seasoned rice wine vinegar. Easiest way to add the ssamjang and gochujang is to put them both in a 2 cup sized dish then add some of the hot broth to them and mix well before dumping in the pot.


Simmer for another 10-20 minutes before serving with some kind of hearty bread or rice crackers.