CREAMY VEGETABLES + DUMPLINGS
and trying to save the world! Read on...
From Marty: I had been day dreaming of this dish, and I couldn't shake it. It kept popping back into my head. It all began at Sprouts (in Fort Collins, CO) when I grabbed a bag of stuffing mix. I immediately wondered if I could make dumplings out of it? Craving a comfort food, the recipe in my head started to unfold and present itself. Most recipes I research first, but this was all guesswork - and every now and then, the universe pulls through. My husband loved it, and he is very honest with me about the meals that he tries. I truly hope you love it, too.
SIDE NOTE: During my grocery shopping at Sprouts I asked about bringing my own bulk food bags, as I am on a mission in 2019 to drastically reduce single use plastic. I inquired to the very nice store manager on duty and she explained to me that due to a CO health-related law I wasn't allowed to bring my own bulk food bags. I also asked about eliminating the plastic bags at the check out and she said that she didn't know. So I emailed their corporate office and here was their response:
Dear Marty Cowan ,
Thank you for reaching out. We understand your concerns and have shared your feedback to the appropriate teams for consideration. Central to Sprouts' commitment to responsible retailing is operating our business in a way that minimizes our impact on the environment and safeguards the health of our communities. Today, all Sprouts stores offer customers the option of choosing paper bags upon checkout, as well as a variety of eco-friendly reusable shopping bags at an affordable price. We also offer a "bag credit" incentive for the use of reusable bags where guests automatically receive a five-cent rebate off their balance for every reusable bag used at checkout. Our procurement team is also actively looking into sustainable alternatives for single-use plastic bags and other plastic packaging options.
Where progressive legislation has put restrictions on single-use plastic bags, Sprouts has acted quickly to eliminate plastic carryout bags from our locations. For example, all of our California stores, which account for approximately 45 percent of our total footprint, have eliminated single-use plastic bags upon checkout. At these stores, we only offer paper or reusable bag options. Sprouts also has a robust recycling program for soft-plastics in California, Arizona, New Mexico, Utah, Texas, Nevada, Alabama, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia. Last year, our guests helped us recycle more than 22 million plastic bags through this program. We are in the process of developing partnerships in the other states where we operate in the near future as we build out our recycling network.
We value your feedback and will keep it in mind as we determine the next evolution of our soft-plastics reduction initiative. In the meantime, you can learn more about our zero waste efforts at about.sprouts.com/sustainability.
Have a healthy day,
It was an informative response. I'm hopeful in the future single use bags will be eliminated at all their stores. I will continue to ask questions, continue to voice my plea to stop single use plastic. You can too! I would love any plastic reducing suggestions you have - I'm especially interested in plastic free freezer food storage ideas. I freeze everything from herbs, citrus juice, tomato paste, vegetables, etc. Having these things on hand is so important!
I digress - thanks so much for staying with me! On to the recipe!
1/2 C. finely chopped onion
1/2 C. finely chopped celery
1 tsp. garlic powder
2 medium yukon gold potatoes, cut in small cubes
1 bag organic frozen mixed vegetables
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 bag (10 oz.) stuffing (I used Arrowhead Mills)
2 TBS. flour
2 TBS. butter (I used Earth Balance)
3 C. vegetable broth (I used Rapunzel vegetable bouillon)
1 C. creamed cashews (recipe below) OR 1 C. dairy cream
Additional salt and pepper, to taste
1/2 C. raw, organic cashews
1/2 very hot water
Place the cashews and water in a blender, seal and allow to soak for 10 minutes. Start on low speed, then to medium and high for about a minute for complete blending. It should resemble the thickness of cream. Add more water if you need to. Set aside.
CREAMY VEGETABLES + DUMPLINGS
In a large, deep saute pan, heat (on medium) olive oil (just go around the pan a few times). Once heated add the onion. Cook for 2-3 minutes.
Add potatoes, celery and garlic powder. Cook for 7-10 minutes, or until the potatoes begin to soften.
Add the frozen vegetables and stir. Add salt and pepper and cook for an additional 3 minutes and then turn the heat off.
In a medium pot, melt the butter on medium heat. Once melted, add the flour and whisk until blended (no lumps). Then slowly add the broth, and then the cream. Keep whisking until well blended. Add the creamed broth to the vegetable mixture, stir well and then turn the heat off. In a medium bowl, add the stuffing mix and water. Allow it to sit for a minute. Then begin to shape large golf ball size dumplings with your hands and carefully place them one by one on top of the vegetable mixture. The stuffing may be slightly crumbly, but don't let that stop you, just keep forming the ball shape. Turn the heat back on to low, cover and cook for 15 minutes. Check to make sure the potatoes are fork tender. May need an additional few minutes of cooking time.
ladle a big scoop of the mixed veggies in a bowl and top with a dumpling. Additional salt and pepper on top if you wish!
Serves 4 generous portions