Monday, October 17, 2011

Vegan MoFo 16: Chicken Cacciatorre in the Slow Cooker

Happy Monday all. I'm in my final week of my pediatrics rotation and this morning in clinic was awesome. Except for the part where I didn't know the diagnoses and looked like a stammering idiot, but that's not a change from the usual. Of course I'm not allowed to talk about any specific patients, but today we had some classic presentations of key childhood illnesses that I hadn't seen before, and I feel like I'll never forget them. Especially the ones I didn't know. There's really nothing like freezing up in front of an attending to make you stick something in your memory.

Besides the learning, my life was recently blessed with two new kitchen-oriented additions. 
Thing 1: A slow cooker - the giant Costco one, courtesy of Roomie Katie. I'm a slow cooker virgin. This is awesome. 

Thing 2: This book, courtesy of my impulse shopping. 

Check out the big Table of Contents - I had no idea you could make so many different types of dishes in a slow cooker. Breads, casseroles, steel-cut oats(!), desserts - I would've been excited just about stews, but there's so much to pick from. 

And so, I seem to have the perfect combination of new items. 
Slow cooker + Slow cooker cookbook = Something delicious to be made.

I asked Fiance John to pick the first recipe, and we decided on the Chik'n Cacciatorre. The recipe calls for either buying chicken-style seitan or making your own, and since we had the whole day, we went for the DIY option. It took about 2 hours to make the seitan, and then it was time to move on to the rest of the recipe. 

Seitan broth.

A simple combination of the diced seitan, sauteed onion/mushroom, tomato, herbs and 6 hours brought us to dinner. 

I've never really used a slow cooker before and I loved spending my afternoon shopping, spending time with John, and never once worrying about what we would have for dinner. 

We served it over a 50/50 mix of whole wheat penne and white mini fusili. John doesn't like whole wheat pasta and I'm trying to taper him to my side of the pasta spectrum gradually. He's willing to compromise, but he's a hard sell on the whole wheat. 

Please oh please share your favorite vegan slow cooker recipe links - I feel like I'm only toe-deep in a whole new world. 

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