Total Views!

Monday, October 8, 2012

Six Months!

Last week Thursday I celebrated my half-way point in my year of veggie-hood. So far, I am still undecided on whether or not my veggie ways will conclude at the end of the year or not. Part of me really likes being a vegetarian, because I feel like it forces me to make healthier choices, like eating more veggies and fruit. The other part of me, really hates the restrictiveness of a vegetarian diet. I LOVE trying new things and too many times I have been disappointed by repeating another meal at a restaurant or have had to make myself a veggie sandwich at the dining center in my res. hall. I really do not crave meat anymore, but I find myself craving meals that have had meat in them. For example, I miss chicken noodle soup. It is completely possible for me to make myself a vegetarian knock-off of chicken noodle soup, and I am sure if I looked hard enough, I could probably find one as well. But why should eating healthy be this hard?
ANYWAYS! to celebrate my 6 months of veggies, I made a scrumptious veggie-casserole, a knock-off of one my mom had made for me growing up at home!

Serves 8. (or four with leftovers for the weekend!)

1/2 box of whole wheat rotini noodles
1/2 bag frozen peas
1 can of your fav. pasta sauce
 (or just condensed tomato soup)
1/4 cup chopped celery
1/4 cup chopped onions 
(which I didn't have but would have liked)
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
[as far as the chopped veggies go, I really just eye-balled it]
3/4 small bag of Parmesan or Mozzarella Shredded Cheese
(I used a mixture of the two)
2 slices of bread, crumbed.
(I used the butts[ends] of the bread, because they make lousy toast.)

the sneaky vegetarian ingredient:
1 bag Morning Star "ground beef"

Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit
1. Cook the noodles. I hope you know how. Drain them, put them in a large mixing bowl.
2. Saute celery, peppers, and onions (what my mom refers to as the holy trio) in a large frying pan.
3. Add the "ground beef" to the sauteing veggies. Mix until the "beef" is no longer frozen. This is mainly just to mix the flavors of the sauteing veggies with the "beef".
4. Add the sauteed mixture into the mixing bowl with the noodles. 
5. Add the can of sauce to the mixing bowl, fold into the delightful mixture until everything is covered in sauce.
6. Add most of the 3/4 bag of cheese to the mixture, but not all! Leave some for the crusty top!
7. Grease a casserole dish (or in my case, a 9"-11" cake pan.)
8. Pour the casserole mixture into the pan. Spread Evenly.
9. Mix the bread crumbs with the leftover cheese, sprinkle on top of the casserole. 
10. Put tinfoil on top of the pan, making sure the casserole doesn't touch the tin foil. This will make sure your crusty topping doesn't get burnt while your casserole insides are baking.
10. Cook for approx. 35 minutes. Take the tin foil off and cook for another 10 minutes.
11. Try your best to let the casserole cool a bit, or get a burnt tongue. 
12. EAT IT ALL UP! It also makes yummy leftovers.

I enjoyed this meal with my lovely roomie, Goombah, and Jay. Goombah and Jay brought instant mash-potatoes and pudding. We had quite a lovely home-made(ish) meal and enjoyed an episode of Glee. It was a spectacular conclusion to my first 6 months of veggieness. Six more to go until the year is up. My continuance of these veggie ways after this year is still in question! 

No comments:

Post a Comment