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Party Time Crockpot Veggie Stew

What you need: 

olive oil, as needed
1 large onion
3-4 large carrots, diced (2 cups)
1-2 cloves garlic, minced (1 tablespoon)
2-3 medium potatoes, diced (2 cups)
32 ounces low-sodium vegetable broth
28 ounces crushed tomatoes
1 cup rice
1 cup red lentils
1 cup shiitake mushrooms, sliced
3 bay leaves
1/2 teaspoon basil
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 tablespoon sugar or blackstrap molasses

What you do: 

1. Put the olive oil into the crock-pot and turn it on high. Make sure you do this first so that the crock-pot will be warm when you put the onion in it.
2. Add onion in the crock-pot, and stir so they are coated in the oil. Cook for about 30 minutes on high while you prepare the other ingredients; the onion should start to become translucent.
3. Stir the onions and add the carrots and garlic. Cook on high for another 30 minutes. After those 30 minutes, add everything else except the mushrooms and spices.
4. Cook on high for 3-4 hours, or cook on low for 6-8 hours. Add the mushrooms and spices for the final hour of cooking. If you cook the mushrooms or spices the entire time, they'll lose their flavor.
Enjoy with a good muffin!
Source of recipe: I wrote this recipe.

Preparation Time: 
30 min, Cooking time: 5 hours
Cooking Time: 
5 hours
Servings: 
8
Recipe Category: 

SO HOW'D IT GO?

It does make a ton of food, my partner has a really high metabolism and eats a lot so between the two of us it usually makes about a weeks worth of dinners.

Another fun addition is a teaspoon of liquid smoke and/or a quarter cup of quiona!

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I just made this recipe, and it was great.  It also made a TON of food.  Next time, I might switch some things up, though.  Maybe instead of the lentils, I'd use barley.  And it would be nice to have something a little crunchy, like celery or fennel, which, in order to keep its crunch, would probably have to go in during the last hour with the mushrooms and spices.  The fennel would certainly give it a little kick! 

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