Dove Knits

Monday, March 12, 2007

Lenten recipes

I'm Orthodox Christian, and right now, we're in the middle of Great Lent. That means some interesting eating restrictions, and I've heard several people wonder about what to make for dinner.

I'm also vegetarian, and most of the things I cook have no animal ingredients. So I decided I'd post some of my recipes for anyone who wants them. Obviously, feel free to modify them!

Apparently, the only thing I know how to cook is soup, though. But all of my recipes are very easy (really, do you think I'll spend more time in the kitchen than necessary? There's knitting to be done!).

Anyway, here goes. Let me know if you try any of these!

Freezable, reheatable lunch burritos:

(Number of servings will vary. See below.)


-1 cup cooked rice
-1 can refried beans (8 oz)
-2 tomatoes, diced and seeded
-1/2 cup salsa, drained as much as possible
-1 pack of tortillas (my pack had 10)
-Cayenne pepper, black pepper, salt to taste

In a big bowl, mush refried beans with the spices. Add rice, tomatoes, and salsa, and mix until relatively homogenous. Cut pieces of foil, wax paper, or plastic wrap to about 12 inches square. Place a tortilla in the middle of each. Fill tortillas with rice/bean/veggie mixture -- I used two heaping spoonfulls per tortilla, but it's up to you. Bend top and bottom of tortilla slightly towards the center. Now fold the sides over each other to complete the burrito, and roll tightly in foil.

Depending on how big your tortillas are (mine were about 8 inch diameter) and how loosely you stuff these, you may make 8-10. For larger tortillas, I'm guessing this will make about 4-6.

Eat right away, or freeze until needed. I love taking these for lunch. They're easy and filling.

To defrost, unwrap from the foil, wrap loosely in a paper towel, and microwave on high for about 1 minute.

Pea Soup

(Four generous bowls.)


-1 Tablespoon cooking oil (or olive oil)
-2 cloves garlic, minced
-a couple of slices of onion, chopped
-1 lb bag dried split peas (pick through them. I've almost broken a tooth on a stone in a bag of these!)
-7 cups water
-Salt, pepper, dillweed to taste

In a large pot, sautee the garlic and onion in the oil for a couple of minutes or until they turn caramely-brown. Add water and peas. Add the spices. Cover.

Heat over low heat until water boils. Then continue to cook until peas are nice and mushy (this does take about an hour, but you're not doing anything in the meantime). Stir occasionally (every 10 minutes or so).

Once the peas are nice and mushy, dump the whole thing into a blender and blend until smooth. Serve hot and with toast or oyster crackers.

If you refrigerate this soup, beware. It'll be perfectly edible the next day, but it will resemble green mashed potatoes.

Awesome potato soup:

This was modified from this recipe . My husband LOVES this.

Depending on how much liquid you use, this will make 4-6 servings of VERY hearty soup. Beware, though -- it's spicy.


-6 largeish potatoes
-4 cloves garlic - 2 coarsely chopped, 2 minced
-2 cups veggie broth or water (you will adjust this as necessary)
-1 cup water (or more broth)
-1/2 package frozen peas
-1/2 package frozen corn
-3 tablespoons vegetable oil
-cayenne pepper, salt, black pepper to taste

1. Throw the potatoes into a large pot, cover, and boil until soft. I threw mine in whole and unpeeled (and then peeled the boiled skin off with my fingers, just to make it easier; I washed the pot before readding the ingredients to it), but you can peel them and cut them into LARGE pieces (because you will not be making the soup in this same water).
2. In a blender, combine 3 potatoes (lopped into several large pieces), the chopped cloves of garlic, and veggie broth or water.
3. In a large pot(I used the same one I boiled potatoes in, washed), briefly fry the garlic, peppers, and salt in vegetable oil on low heat.
4. Add the broth/potato blend, still on low heat.
5. Cut the remaining potatoes into chunks -- mine were big because the potatoes were so soft. Add to the broth/potato mixture. Here, if the soup is too thick, add a cup of water or broth. Add more liquid if desired.
6. Add the frozen peas and corn. Simmer until everything is tender and you're hungry.

This soup freezes very well in sealed plastic containers.

Tuesday Night Dinner:

Ok, this one isn't soup! It's a dish we make every week (on Tuesdays!), but when not fasting, we also add goat cheese. It's one of our absolute favorite dishes.

If desired, make quinoa instead of cous-cous. Quinoa has all the amino acids and lots of fiber and iron, and is generally more nutritious. But not everyone likes the taste. Sometimes we mix half couscous and half quinoa.

This serves 2-3. We eat big portions, though, so it may serve more at your house!


-1 cup dry couscous, to be prepared per package directions.
-1/2 package frozen spinach
-1 tomato
-lemon juice and/or lime juice
-pine nuts if desired

1. Cook couscous per package directions (boil 1 cup of water per cup of couscous. Turn off heat. Add couscous, cover, and let sit until fluffy, or about 5 minutes). If desired, add 2 tablespoons of lemon or lime juice to the water for cooking couscous.
2. Boil enough water to cover the spinach, and add spinach. Cook until it's fully thawed.
3. Dice the tomato.
4. Drain spinach and mix with the couscous and tomato. Top with pine nuts, if desired (and goat cheese when not fasting).

Pizzacutter's rice and beans

Also not a soup! My husband's recipe. The mandarin oranges in this, besides adding great taste, also help your body absorb iron from the beans (thanks, Vitamin C!)


-Two cups cooked rice
-1 8-oz can red beans, black beans, or whatever kind of beans you want except green beans
-1 8 oz can apricot halves
-1 8 oz can Mandarin oranges

Ok, folks, this one is really easy to make.


Open all the cans. Drain beans, apricots, and oranges. Chop the apricots some more. Mix everything together. Eat. Yay!

My mom's bean and potato soup:

Ok, this isn't really a recipe, because I haven't tried to cook it yet! But basically my mom diced a couple of potatoes, opened a can of beans, and cooked them together until they were nice and tender. Then she sauteed a few pieces of onion in some olive oil (reserve recipe for oil days!) and added the oil and onion to the soup. It was SO GOOD.

And, finally:

Vegan fruit bread:

This has seen many, many incarnations. I love it. It does tend to come out quite thick and dense, but to me, that's a plus. Jenny, this is the recipe for the bread we brought over for y'all that one time.

Anyway, I always make it a bit different every time, depending on what I do and do not have/feel like using at the time. Hence, I've divided the recipe into core ingredients (ones you must use) and extras. Feel free to use all or none of the extras, and/or add your own.

Core ingredients:
-1 cup applesauce (unsweetened)
-3/4 cup sugar (white or brown; you can easily use less, and I usually use alot less, as the applesauce and bananas are very sweet anyway. Also can use 1/2 cup honey or molasses.)
-2 mushed bananas
-2.5 cups whole wheat flour (use half wheat and half white, or all white if you want. The all-wheat version is denser)
-2 teaspoons baking soda
-0.5 teaspoons salt
-Optional: 1-3 tablespoon vegetable oil (for moistness)

Extras (use all, some, or none):

-1/3 cup wheat germ
-1/2 cup flax seeds
-1 large apple, diced (I didn't bother to peel it)
-1 cup walnuts
-1/2 cup chopped dried figs
-Whatever else your little heart desires :)

1. Preheat oven to 350F
2. Combine applesauce and sugar.
3. Add bananas, flour, salt, and baking soda and stir very well to mix (I don't bother using an electric mixer). Add oil.
4. Stir in the extras
5. Pour into loaf pan (the pan will be very full, so you can split it into two pans, or a pan and some muffin cups).
6. Bake 1 hr - 1 hr 15 min, until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean.

Freezes well.

I love this by itself, or, when not fasting, with butter or Earth Balance.

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At 5:46 PM, Blogger reluctantMANGO said...

MMmmmmm. I've been on a soup kick lately too - we had Miso soup tonight! The vegan fruit bread is looking pretty good right now :) Thanks for sharing your recipes!

At 8:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh potato soup is absolutely my favorite food of all time -- next to mashed potatoes. I'll have to try putting other veggies in it next time. Normally for us it's just potatoes.

At 11:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for sharing these yummy recipes! You know, I'm not a vegetarian but would love to reduce animal products in my/our meals, but I'm often at a loss of ideas what to cook then - with your recipes now I'm off to a good start I think, especially with the soups - yummy, I looove soups!

At 6:48 AM, Blogger Kary said...

Thanks for the recipes. They are sound so wonderful ... I, too, am trying to reduce meat in our meals - not only to honor animals, but also to help leal the Earth.

At 12:39 PM, Blogger Sarah said...

Those all look delicious! I'm catholic too and totally forgot about no-meat fridays until I saw this - whoops!

At 11:26 AM, Blogger Amanda said...

You made me hungry! I think I will try the freezable, reheatable lunch burritos first and work my way down the list.


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