Charlene's Lunch Ideas

Charlene's Lunch Ideas

My ex-husband went through various vegetarian phases, so I used to do a lot of vegetarian cooking, some of it rather involved, but there are easy meals if you're a meat-and-potatoes cook.

Mac and cheese unless she's vegan. From scratch, of course. It's not hard and your kids (Linda, I don't remember if you have young kids and hey, since it's in your neck of the woods - if you're who I think you are! - will you be at SOAR this year?)

As Erin (I think) said, anything lentils and rice. Fry onions and garlic, add cooked lentils and tomatoes (if you like) and seasoning (cumin, pepper, cayenne if you like, etc) and add some more veggies if you like. Depending on spices, you can serve with cheese or chutney or salsa etc. For the meat-eaters at the table who feel the meal lacks something, grill a couple of sausages to serve alongside.

Buy some fresh (in the refrigerated case, don't get the dried stuff) filled pasta and serve with either a tomato sauce (from a jar if you must) or make your own alfredo, it's not hard and is quick: After the pasta is JUST cooked, add a hunk of melted butter (a few tablespoons), some whipping cream or half-and-half (half a cup or less) and a good amount of fresh parmesan (not the stuff in the green can, a third of a cup or so). Keep stirring over gentle heat until it thickens up. Add more cheese if you like.

As others have mentioned, burrito/taco/pseudo-Mexican is good too, as you can add meat to some of them (for the non-vegetarians).

There's always pizza. I know that for most Americans pizza almost inevitably implies meat, but it's totally a cultural thing, as it was highly unusual back in the Old Country. Living on the coast, the usual non-dairy protein on pizza was seafood, but vegetarian pizza was definitely the norm for us. Mushrooms are good (I'd toss them in a little oil first), as are artichoke hearts (get the marinated ones, they're tastier and less likely to dry out), onions, green peppers, olives, and my favourite, anchovies - though I guess the latter won't fly for either of you!



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