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Vegan for the Holidays

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Vegetarians in Paradise
Ask Aunt Nettie

We're delighted to share our Aunt Nettie with you. She's agreed to answer any questions you might ask about vegetarian food, its preparation, and even clean-up tips. But we have to prepare you. She just might want to come right over to your house and help you fix dinner.

To send any questions to Ask Aunt Nettie, .

Hi Aunt Nettie,

I'm trying to stay on my new vegan diet, but it's really hard. After working all day and coping with the heavy traffic on the way home, I'm really too tired to do a lot of cooking. Do you have any suggestions for a quick and easy vegetarian recipe with not too many ingredients?

Your friend,

Howdy there Maureen,

I surely do understand 'bout bein' all tuckered out after workin' all day. But you needn't fret, darlin' 'cause I got jes what you need--a vegetarian recipe that's easy, quick, an' mighty dee-lishus. There's only 6 ingredients, so there's not a lot o' fussin'. Now 'nother nice thing is that it makes 'nuff fer two or three days worth. How's 'bout that!

Yer ever lovin' Aunt Nettie


1 C. (240 ml) quinoa
2 C. (480 ml) water
3/4 t. salt

1 15-oz. (420 g) can cooked lentils
2 tomatoes, chopped
1/2 medium onion, chopped

  1. Rinse the quinoa in a fine mesh strainer under running water for a full minute. Combine quinoa, water, and salt in a 2-quart (1/2 liter) saucepan. Cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Turn heat down to low, and steam 15 minutes.
  2. While the quinoa is cooking, open the can of lentils, and chop the tomatoes and onions.
  3. When quinoa is cooked, remove half and put it in the refrigerator for another day. Add lentils, juice and all, the tomatoes, and onions. Cover and cook 2 or 3 minutes longer. Serves 3.

If You Haven't Met Aunt Nettie. . .

Our Aunt Nettie has a head like a hard disk. It's filled with gigabytes of information about food and cooking. And she's just itchin' to share her learnin' with city folk who live in mortal fear of the stovetop.

Aunt Nettie grew up on the farm. She did not eat out of a can or reach into the freezer. There was no microwave to pop her food into. Everything she made was from scratch. All the food she ate was natural, without pesticides. It was grown right there on the family farm, and she had to cook to survive. At eighty-three years young she still leaps and bounds around the kitchen and can shake, rattle, and roll those pots and pans with the best of them.

Nowadays, Aunt Nettie just shakes her head and complains, "Nobody cooks anymore. They have no idea about puttin' a meal together." She's on a mission. She wants to help those younguns eat better so they can grow up healthy like her own eight kids.

Click here for past Ask Aunt Nettie Columns

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