The Greensboro Vegan Meetup Group Message Board › Cheap n Fresh meals

Cheap n Fresh meals

A former member
Post #: 8
I'm on a really limited budget with my three kids -- so was wondering what favorite cheap meals you all like that uses fresh ingredients? I've made cabbage with tofu meat and a little bit of oil in a wok before and the total cost was about $5 or less for a filling meal.
A former member
Post #: 10
Stir-fry is always good -- it's easy and inexpensive to dress up some rice, veggies and tofu with soy sauce or teriyaki. Just as importantly, it's nutritious, too.

Beans are a fantastic, inexpensive protein source. I like to buy the dried kind and cook them overnight in my cock pot -- that one little cheat lets me buy organic beans without having to pay a fortune for them. They're good in soups, a simple minnestrone can be made easily and cheaply in a crockpot or on the stove by adding some canned diced tomatoes to drained, cooked beans like canneloni or garbanzo, bouillon and a little extra water for simmering, garlic, the vegetables of your choice and seasoning -- a classic Italian blend works well. After as little as 15 minutes, turn down the heat, drizzle the pot with a little olive oil and serve.

Another good, inexpensive vegan meal can be made with homemade seitan. Seitan is the original mock meat and it packs a powerful protein wallop. I made this recently -- in my bread machine, actually -- and it was unbelievably tasty.

Seitan Dough:

2 cups gluten flour (often called Vital Wheat Gluten, you can purchase it in almost any grocery store)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp ground ginger
1 and 1/4 cups water or vegetable stock
3 tbsp Braggs Liquid Aminos (you can find this in any health food store or substitute soy sauce)
1-3 tsp sesame oil (I used canola and it turned out just fine)

Mix ingredients. When they form a stiff dough, knead 15 times, let rest 5 minutes. Knead for another 15 minutes and let rest 15 minutes.

Broth:

4 cups water
1/4 cup soy sauce
3-4 slices of ginger
3 inch kombu (a kind of seaweed -- I used a small handful of Hijiki and removed the bits later, but you can also just skip this)

Cut into small inch-long pieces and simmer for 30 to 60 minutes.

I later used the seitan to make a stew, as sauteed cutlets in fajitas with bell peppers, onions and tomatoes and then oven-roasted with herbs, served cold, in a salad.
A former member
Post #: 10
That looks delicious! Thanks for the suggestion :D
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