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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, .

Dear Aunt Nettie,

I make a simple navy bean soup, but my husband is getting bored with it. Can you suggest a recipe for soup that has beans but is not too complicated?

Your friend, Frieda

Howdy there Frieda,

Well darlin', yer husband is gonna be huggin' you tight tonight 'cause I gots a recipe that I'm shure will send him dancin' 'round the kitchen. It's easy as pie, an' you probably have all the fixin's right there in yer own kitchen. All's you need is a big stockpot an' a few minutes ta put it together. Then set back an' let the stove do all the work!

I jes know yer gonna have a fine kettle o' soup tonight!

Yer ever lovin' Aunt Nettie


    1/3 C. (80 ml) green split peas
    1/3 C. (80 ml) brown lentils
    1/3 C. (80 ml) pearl barley

    1 1-lb. (450g) can kidney beans, with liquid
    1 1-lb. (450g) can pinto beans, with liquid
    7 C. (1 liter + 720 ml) vegetable stock
    1/4 t. dry mustard
    1/4 C. (60 ml) chopped fresh parsley or 2 T. dried parsley
    1 t. dried marjoram
    1 t. dried oregano
    1/2 t. paprika
    1/4 t. sugar
    1/2 t. salt
    2 T. instant minced onions or 1/2 medium onion, minced
    1/8 to 1/4 t. freshly ground black pepper

    2 to 4 T. lemon juice

  1. Wash split peas, lentils and barley. Drain and set aside.
  2. Put canned beans, vegetable stock, dry mustard, parsley, marjoram, oregano, paprika, sugar, salt, instant minced onions, and pepper into a large stockpot. Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add washed peas, lentils and barley, and return to boiling. Turn heat down to medium and simmer 45-50 minutes. Adjust seasoning if needed.
  4. Add lemon juice to taste for a tangy finishing touch. Serves 5 - 6.

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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