Veganish: Goulash

After seven years of not eating meat, I can honestly say that I haven’t missed it much….except when it comes to my mother’s family recipes.  On a typical weekday, my family prepared and ate pretty standard meals; chicken and pasta with jarred Alfredo sauce, mac n’ cheese, and grilled cheese sandwiches with tomato soup.  However, every so often, my mother would stray from the everyday and cook a dish whose recipe was passed down to her from her mother.  My brother and I would go nuts for these meals, partly because they felt extra special, and partly (at least for me) because eating those foods made me feel closer to my mum, as well as to my grandmother, whom I sadly never got the chance to meet.  I loved the sense of tradition and family that eating those meals gave me, and I love them still.  The down side? All of them contain meat in one way or another.

I recently decided that I was going to try and recreate vegan versions of my mother’s and grandmother’s recipes, with the hope that one day I’ll pass these versions on to my own family.  And so, without further ado, meet my meatless (ha!) Vegan Goulash.

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Goulash is a traditional meat sauce that, according to mum, hails from Poland.  It’s usually made with hamburger and served over pasta, but I swapped those out in favor of soy crumbles and zucchini noodles to veganize (did I just invent a word?) and lighten this dish.  I balanced out this meal with a slice of whole wheat bread and, of course, a small glass of red!

Vegan Goulash with Zucchini Noodles (serves 2-4)

Ingredients:

  • 1 yellow onion, diced
  • 1 pepper, diced
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • olive oil (roughly 1 TBS)
  • 1 package of soy crumbles- I used Trader Joe’s brand
  • 1 can of tomato paste; 8 oz
  • 1 can of tomato soup; 12-16 oz
  • 2 raw zucchinis, spiralized into spaghetti-like strands
  • salt; to taste
  • pepper; to taste
  • garlic powder; to taste
  • red pepper flakes; to taste

Method:

  1. In a saucepan, sautée the onion, garlic, and pepper in the olive oil until the onions are translucent (~5 min).
  2. Add the soy crumbles, and sautée for a few more minutes.
  3. Add your spices, all to taste.  I prefer a little kick to my sauce, so I used a lot of red pepper flakes.
  4. Add the tomato paste and soup.  Stir your sauce, and allow to simmer until hot.
  5. In the meantime, spiralize the zucchini.  You can heat your noodles through in a pan with some oil if you like, but I prefer leaving them raw.  I find that using 2 zucchinis yields just enough “noodles” for two people, with one serving leftover for lunch.
  6. Once the sauce is hot, ladle immediately onto your raw zucchini noodles, and enjoy!

What have you been cooking up lately? Working on any old family recipes? Creating new ones? I’d love to hear! Until next time!

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