Village Macaroni Hot Pot with Vegan Mince & Leeks
This is the best Vegan Casserole dish for Pasta. Made with Vegan mince, village macaroni and peppery leeks this is a warming and filling main meal, everyone will love.
And best of all it is cheap and easy to make, and with all that lovely pasta you won’t even notice that you’re eating such a healthy meal.
Carnival & Lent
This week is kind of special as on the 26th February it’s Carnival, and Carnival marks the beginning of Lent, for every Christian religion – whatever day it happens to fall on. This year 2017, Orthodox Lent starts on 27th February and goes right up until Easter Sunday, which falls on 16th April this year – 40 days!!
N.B: If you are fasting for Orthodox Lent here in Cyprus, you’re not to eat meat or dairy at all, for the full 40 days. Lots of people do the full fast, some just give up certain things for Lent and some just do the ‘full vegan’ on the last week (Holy Week) leading up to Easter Sunday.
The reason I get so excited during Orthodox Lent here, is because it’s the only time of year people don’t look at me like I’m a ‘weirdo’ when I ask if something is ‘meat free’. Everyone’s doing it!
And the other great thing about Lent in Cyprus, is that Vegetarian and Vegan foods are readily available everywhere!!
All restaurants, for example TGI’s, have Vegan dishes added to their regular menu, Domino’s Pizza offer Vegan pizza for the whole of this period & even McDonald’s has special Lenten/Vegan additions to their menu.
The weirdest thing is though, that when it’s not the Lenten period, the whole population gets struck down with this strange affliction. A type of Amnesia, where no-one understands what ‘meat-free’ means, and they serve everything with some animal protein in it – especially the stock it’s cooked with! 🙁
Waiter: ‘It’s only chicken’
St David’s day
The other great thing this week is that it’s St David’s Day on March 1st – who is the patron Saint of Wales.
Two of my boys were born in Wales, I love Wales!!
So in honour of both these Special days, this recipe is Vegan (and suitable for Lent) and is made with Leeks – the National Emblem of Wales!!!
This recipe is a favourite of ours, really quick and easy, full of veggies and filling pasta.
In Greek, this kind of pasta is called Makaronia Horiatika (or Village Macaroni), and is usually served with some grated halloumi and crushed dried mint sprinkled over the top.
I have upped the flavours and the veggie content in this recipe, making it a wonderfully spicy and filling – complete meal in a bowl!
Village Macaroni Hotpot with Vegan Mince & Leeks
Village Macaroni Hot Pot or Casserole with Vegan Mince & Leeks
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Easy, warming and filling - you would never think that this declicious hot pot was healthy and low fat.
- 1 Leek sliced into half moons
- 1 large white onion
- 1 tin chopped tomatoes
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 125 g (1/3 pack) Tesco Soy Mince
- 6-8 mushrooms (Portobellini/Chestnut)
- 350 g short cut macaroni /Bucattini or Orzo
- vegetable stock cube made up to 500 ml with water
- olive oil spray
- Saute the sliced leeks and chopped onion with some olive oil spray, then cover them for a few minutes to steam.
- Add the rest of the ingredients, except the mince. bring to a boil then simmer
- As soon as the pasta is cooked 3/4 - or al dente, add the mince too. You should still have enough water just covering the macaroni mixture.
- Cook for another few minutes. Then take off the heat stir & cover giving the dish a few more minutes for all the flavours to meld.
- Ladle into bowls (with or without stock), garnish with grated parmesan/hard cheese/vegan cheese -which is optional.
- I personally prefer a good grating of black pepper instead!!
- Enjoy 🙂
A small note about the pasta. Here in Cyprus the brand of Village pasta I use is Mitsides, but in the UK where it's twice the price, I just use Bucatini and it is just as delicious.
Also, you'll notice from the photos, that one version is 'soupy' and the other is more pasta. This was just to show that you can eat it both ways, like a casserole or like a stew!
I love both ways, the leek is so warming with the veggies and mince, and pasta is just delicious whatever you pair it with 🙂
The Ingredients List
If you have mince left over, use it up by making another awesome one pot meal, Creole Vegan Dirty Rice.
For those following Slimming World, this is completely syn free, and you can also increase your veggies if you like, by adding even more mushrooms and leeks.
This is the macaroni I use (Makaronia Horiatika), which is made here in Cyprus and is exported worldwide, but if it is NOT available where you are ……
…… I also make it with Bucatini and with Orzo, both of which are a ‘robust’ pasta. In other words, it does not turn to mush when you cook it, but keeps it’s shape. So use whatever strong pasta you love to make this!
And if you love pasta, another awesome dish you must try is my recipe for Vegan ‘Meatballs’ and tomato sauce.
I hope you enjoy this village macaroni, Vegan hotpot with mince & leeks, either for St David’s Day as part of your Lenten menu or even like me, as a delicious Vegan bowlful of the best comfort food!
I hope you enjoy, and please let me know if you can get Makaronia Horiatika in your part of the world!
All my meal ideas include at least one third of salad/vegetables and/or fruit with it, (this is the way we at Slimming World eat less without going hungry).
N.B. Any item in bold is a Healthy Extra* on the Slimming World plan, so these must be weighed or measured and not exceeded, if you want to maximise your weight loss. Eating at least one third of vegetables (superfree food) at each and every meal is also key to this plan.
Please note that I am in no way affiliated to Slimming World, nor am I a Slimming World consultant, and still believe that the best way to follow this plan is to join either online or better still with a group near you.