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Greek Stew

Good morning, campers!

Last weekend we had a party, and I made a Greek stew we have discussed here
in the past.  It was a HUGE hit!  So in light of the current discussion of
TVP, I will repost the recipe.  It was actually a combination of two
recipes?one from the archives originally posted by Sherry in 1995
(hmmm?which Sherry?), and the other privately e-mailed to me (doesn?t meet
list guidelines) by Tina in Montreal.  Thanks to both of you!

This sounds long, but it?s extremely easy.  There is NOTHING complicated
about this recipe, and you can just play with the seasonings till you like
it.  That?s what I did.  So, without further ado, here is my version, with a
couple of options in parentheses:


4 large onions, coarsely chopped (or 2 lbs or so of pearl onions, peeled)
4-5 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
1 tsp. crushed allspice (or same amount of ground allspice)
2 tsp. ground cumin
3 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
4 cloves
2 cups TVP chunks
2 15-oz. cans of tomato puree
1-1/2 cups red wine (I used cabernet)
1-1/2 cups water
2 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp. low-sodium soy sauce
1 tsp. seasoned salt (I used Jamaica Me Crazy brand jerk-style salt; I?m
sure it makes no difference what kind you use))
1 Tbsp. red wine vinegar (I will omit this next time; to me it unbalanced
the flavors)
2 Tbsp. brown sugar
a few drops of liquid smoke flavoring
your favorite sauteing medium

Saute the onions and garlic with the allspice and cumin in a large frying
pan until they just begin to brown.  Dump into the slow cooker and all
remaining ingredients.  (It is NOT necessary to pre-soak the TVP chunks,
although you can do that if you wish.  See below.)      Stir.  Cook on High
for 4-5 hours.  If necessary, remove lid at end and allow the sauce to
reduce a bit.  Serve in bowls with crusty whole-grain bread and an
assortment of salads.  This served 11 people as a main dish.  Could also be
served over rice, pasta or couscous.

If you want to soak TVP chunks: Use boiling water and add the liquid smoke
to the soaking water.  I soaked some, then decided I needed more TVP for the
amount of liquid I had, so I added more straight from the bag.  When the
dish was done, there was no way to tell the difference between the two
?batches? of chunks.

One of the original recipes called for pearl onions (I couldn?t find them
frozen and bagged, and I?m too lazy to peel a pound or two of fresh ones),
and the other for a handful of raisins (not authentically Greek, I?m told,
but surely tasty too).

The conversation bits that I overheard went something like this:

Mmmmmmmmmmm?that smells WONDERFUL!
What is IN it?  It smells out of this world!
What kind of meat is that?
It?s lamb, isn?t it?
It?s pork, isn?t it?
Is it beef?  No, it must be lamb, it?s Greek!
But Ruth doesn?t eat meat.  That can?t be meat!
Then what is it?
I know what it is?it?s ?pork?: you know, ?SoooooooooYYYYYYYYY?!  (That?s the
pig call being imitated.)

Either these folks hadn?t eaten in several days, or they loved it.  There
was quite literally nothing left in the pot at the end of the evening except
the cinnamon stick and the bay leaves!  There were several requests for the
recipe, and everyone raved about it.  These are folks who are all watching
their health but love to eat, and some are excellent cooks themselves.  So I
felt pretty good that they were happy, and that I had introduced them to
something new!

So next time you have to serve a bunch of carnivores along with your veggie
and lowfat friends, try this!



Ruth C. Hoffman    ruth.hoffman@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx
Language Resources
138 Oak Street
Lake Zurich, IL  60047-1322
Tel: 847.726.1608
Fax: 847.726.1652
URL: http://www.language-resources.com/

"The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking
new landscapes but in having new eyes."  --Marcel Proust