Mushroom Cholent

Cholent is a stew simmered for a long time and served by Jewish families for Shabbat. I love to cook new things and learn new words at the same time. This recipe happens to be vegan, but cholent may also contain meat and/or eggs.

There was no extra liquid when this was done and I would not call it a stew. However, it was tasty enough after I added salt and pepper to taste. While I am frequently satisfied with vegetarian meals, the texture and flavor seemed a bit lacking in this dish, and my test tasters agreed.

1 c. dried navy beans
1 T olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
2 stalks celery, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
2 parsnips, peeled and diced
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 T ginger, minced
4 1/2 c. cups vegetable stock
2 potatoes, peeled and cut into small cubes
4 large portabella mushrooms, or several baby bella mushrooms
1 c. barley

Soak the beans overnight. In the morning drain off the water. Rinse the barley under cold water. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions through the parsnips and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are softened. Add the garlic and ginger and stir for 1 minute. Add the vegetable stock and take it off the heat.

Put half the onion and stock mixture into the crock pot. Add half the beans. Spread the potatoes on top to make an even layer. Put the mushrooms on top so that it covers the potatoes, cutting the mushrooms to fit if needed. Spread the barley on top of the mushrooms and the rest of the beans on top of the barley. Add the rest of the onion/stock mix on top.

Cover and cook on low for 10 to 12 hours or on high for 5 to 6 hours or until the beans are tender.

-Adapted from “125 Best Vegetarian Slow Cooker Recipes”

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