I have been an oatmeal making machine lately. In fact it’s been awhile since I’ve cooked dinner in the slow cooker. So in honor of me actually cooking dinner again, I give you a second post today. I hope you enjoy the recipe.
Feel free to leave out the olive oil to make this a fat-free dish. You can also change out different beans, seitan, or your favorite soy foods depending on what you have on hand.
Last week I was craving a stew and had some homemade chik’n seitan, leftover Gimme Lean and lots of field peas in the freezer. This is what came out of that.
I’m calling it a Cassoulet because it reminds me of one (minus the animal products of course). It’s super hearty and stands on its own, but you could serve some crusty bread and a salad to complete the meal.
If you aren’t sure what field peas are take a look at this Grist article. It has more recipes for them there as well. You can substitute black-eyed peas or any other bean you happen to have in your pantry. After all it’s your creation!
Slow Cooker Vegan Cassoulet
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 small onion, minced
- 1/2 tube Lightlife Gimme Lean sausage
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 3 small carrots, chopped
- 2 cups pre-cooked field peas or black-eyed peas**
(feel free to just use 1 1/2 cups if you are using canned)
- 1 1/2 cups diced tomatoes (or a 14.5 ounce can – do not drain)
- 1 1/2 cups chicken seitan (or about 2 packages Lightlife Smart Strips), chopped
- 1 to 2 cups water plus 1 tablespoon vegan chick’n bouillon
(or same amount broth, it can be from the seitan if you are using homemade)
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon Herbs de Provence
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1/2 teaspoon liquid smoke or smoked paprika (or 1/2 teaspoon smoked salt and no additional salt)
- salt to taste
The night before: Heat the oil over medium heat then add the onion and sauté until translucent. (You can use a non-stick pan and leave out the oil if you are reducing fat and/or calories in your diet.) Add the Gimme Lean to the onion mixture in the pan. Cook until you can crumble the sausage easily with your spatula and it is browned and cooked thoroughly. Chop the celery and carrots. Store everything together in the fridge overnight.
In the morning: Add everything to the slow cooker to an oiled slow cooker. Cook on low for 6 to 8 hours.
** I had trouble getting my frozen field peas to cook with the stew. I put everything in together the night before and they were not tender until the next night. (Yes, 24 hours later!) That’s why I’m suggesting cooking your beans before. If you are using dry or frozen beans cook them the night before. Just cover them with 2 to 3 inches of water and cook on low overnight. You can add the rest of the ingredients to the same pot in the morning, just drain off any excess water (other than the 2 cups you’ll be adding anyhow).
I keep hearing the differing opinions in the tomatoes make beans cook slower debate and right now I’m in the camp of don’t cook them together!