Lent is upon us, friends. Part of our sacrifice is abstaining from meat on Fridays. In the long run, it’s a small price to pay for the price paid for us.
My husband is not the biggest fish-eater, and by fish, I’m referring to it in a form that is not beer-battered and dipped in Tartar sauce, stuffed and sauced in a taco, slapped on a sandwich and covered in cheese. For those of you with non-fish friendly households, I wanted to provide some DELICIOUS options for consideration outside of fish.
The first three recipes are from Allrecipes.com, and have all been tested by yours truly. The last two recipes were from my Mom’s personal collection, and as such, are stellar!
1) Cheese & Onion Enchiladas: I grew up on my Grandma’s enchiladas, with a sauce (for dipping the corn tortillas in) that was made with chili powder, flour, and water — then stuffed with chopped onions and Muenster cheese. I have since discovered a new recipe with lots of flavor that we both really like, 10 Minute Enchilada Sauce. Look how rich in color that sauce appears? View Recipe>>
Recipe Tips: I added approx 1 Tbsp Caldo de Pollo to the recipe (or Chicken broth instead of water to add flavor). I used a clove of fresh garlic (crushed) instead of garlic powder, and increased the ground cumin and onion salt at least to 1/2 tsp – perhaps even to 3/4 tsp each. This makes a thick, rich sauce.
2) Homemade Veggie Pizza: You know you’re a homemade pizza-lover when your Bridal Registry includes a pizza stone! Yes, that’s us. Homemade pizza can be easy as picking up a pre-made crust (my Mom used to make it with white bread dough from the freezer section) and canned sauce, to pulling out all the stops with homemade dough and sauce. Since we try and eat healthy here, I make a multigrain crust with some wheat flour in it, and make my own tomato sauce if time allows (the extra sauce I’ll pop in the fridge to use later with pasta, extra pizza dough in freezer). I topped this yummy pizza with a 4 Italian Cheese blend, pepperoncinis, sliced mushrooms, green pepper on 1/2, and then sprinkle it later with freshly ground Italian Herb blend and Red Pepper Flakes. I’m getting hungry as I type this, sheesh!
3) Eggplant Parmesan: If you want a pretty quick recipe, and like Italian Food, here’s a good option. If you used a jar of Spaghetti sauce, the prep is less than 30 minutes, and bake time is about 35 min, so within an hour, dinner’s ready. You can serve the eggplant over noodles, or serve them on the side – drizzled with olive oil, topped with parmesan & Italian Seasoning – easy, quick, delicious.
4) Shuler’s Swiss Onion Soup
Shuler’s was a very popular restaurant back in Michigan. Their Win Schuler’s cheese spread would still be one of my all time favorite snack foods if I knew where to find it! This soup takes some time, but if you can spare it, you will be so glad you did, because it is divine.
Shuler’s Swiss Onion Soup Servings: 12
1/2 cup butter
2 lbs onions, peeled, thinly sliced
1 1/2 teaspoons Hungarian paprika
6 cups beef stock or 6 cups canned beef broth, reduced
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3/4 cup flour
3/4 teaspoon celery salt
12 slices French bread
1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
1 cup (8 ounces) dark beer
salt and pepper, to taste
12 slices mozzarella or gruyere cheese
- In large stock pot over medium-hugh heat melt butter. Add onions and cook ’til brown, stirring regularly, about 30 minutes.
- Sprinkle in paprika, then add beef stock and bring to a boil.
- While onions are browning make a roux by whisking oil and flour in a saucepan. Cook over medium heat, while whisking constantly, until mixture is browned. Watch that it doesn’t burn!
- When roux is done, stir enough into stock pot to thicken soup, then add celery salt, cover and simmer at least 2 hours.
- Shortly before serving sprinkle bread slices with Parmesan and toast them in the oven. Remove and set aside.
- Add beer to soup and return to serving temperature. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
- Ladle soup into (oven-proof) bowls or serving crocks, top with a toasted bread slice and a slice of Mozzarella or Gruyere.
- Place bowls under the broiler for a minute and watch carefully ’til cheese is melted, bubbly and slightly brown.
5) Crockpot Vegetable Chili
I love using our Crockpot. It’s like gifting myself a hot and ready dinner upon arriving home after a hard day’s work. Here’s a delicious recipe, sans meat. There’s quite a bit of chopping/slicing involved with this veggie prep, so if you have a food processor, that will speed things along. Fire up your crockpot, pop in the veggies, grab you some Cornbread, and enjoy. This is my favorite kind of boxed Cornbread.
Crockpot Vegetable Chili
40 oz can Kidney beans (drained)
1 onion, chopped
4 oz can green chilies
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 c. chili powder
1 Tbsp. dried oregano
2 tsp. cumin
1 c. mushrooms, sliced
2 zucchinis, sliced
2 carrots, thinly sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
28 oz. can diced tomatoes
1 tsp. salt
1. Saute onion and garlic until soft.
2. Combine all ingredients in crock pot.
3. Cook on low in Crockpot for 6-8 hours, or 4 hours on high.
I hope you and your families will enjoy these delicious meatless meals. I wish a blessed Lent to all of you. Leave reviews or suggestions in the comments, please and thank you!