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Meatless Monday: Cashew Stew

I know in many households in the country families have gotten on board with meatless Monday or at least a meatless dinner every week. We do this in my house. It isn't always Monday, but we do aim to remove meat one dinner a week. Just because you are eating meatless though doesn't mean you shouldn't be getting your needed protein. So many times a meatless meal turns into a pasta dish because it is easy, quick and versatile. The problem is you probably end up eating less healthy on these meatless days then you do during a normal dinner. You need to keep your meatless meals a balanced dinner. This cashew stew is a great solution. You will get protein, vegetables and limited fat and carbs. Feel free to customize this to fit your family's taste buds.

Serves 4-6

Ingredients 1 lb Carrots, peeled and diced 2 cups Celery, diced 2-3 Zucchini, diced 1 pkg white or baby portabella mushrooms, cleaned and quartered 1 Red Pepper, seeded and diced 1 Green Pepper seeded and diced 1 medium Red Onion, diced 1 12oz pkg Whole Cashews 1 pkg Frozen Petite Peas 4 Tbsp Tomato Paste ¼ cup Balsamic Vinegar ½ cup Red Wine (optional) 2 cups Vegetable or Chicken Stock 3 cloves of Garlic, minced ½ tsp Dried Thyme ½ tsp Paprika 1 ½ Tbsp chopped fresh Rosemary Olive Oil Salt Pepper Directions Preheat your oven to 450 degrees. Season diced carrots, celery, zucchini, mushrooms, pepper and onion with salt, pepper and coat with olive oil. Arrange in a single layer on 2 parchment or foil lined baking sheets. Roast for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the cashews. Divide them evenly between the two pans. Return to oven and roast another 15 minutes or until the veggies and cashews are lightly toasted. Set the roasted veggies to the side. Heat a large pot over medium-high heat. Add a small amount of olive oil to the pan. Place 1/3 of the veggie mixture in the pan with the garlic. Let cook for a minute or two until you can smell the garlic. Now add your tomato paste, paprika, thyme and rosemary. Let this toast for a couple of minutes. If you are going to use the red wine, add to the pan now and scrape the bottom of the pan to remove any cooked on bits. Let the wine cook down for a couple of minutes while the alcohol cooks out. Turn your heat down to medium. Add your balsamic vinegar. If you didn’t use red wine make sure you scrape the bottom of the pan when you add your vinegar. Now add the rest of your vegetables and your stock. Season with salt and pepper. Turn the heat up to high and bring the stew to a boil. Cover and let everything cook together for 5 minutes. Finally add your peas and cook until they are cooked through. Make sure you taste the stew for seasoning before serving.

Adapted from Wegman's Cashew Stew Menu recipe

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