My kids love to help me in the kitchen. When it was just my son and I home all day we would bake all the time. I thought it was the perfect afternoon activity. We spent time together, he leaned a few things and at the end of it all we had muffins. When my daughter was born things got a little tricky and the kitchen fun stopped. Honestly almost all of the baking stopped. I started using my Slow Cooker every day because time in the kitchen was just to stressful.
I am starting to see a light at the end of the tunnel. My daughter is now (March 2016) just over 18 months old and is now more capable of following instructions. My son is very nearly 4 and is now more capable of taking turns and helping his sister instead of competing with her. They are both still very good at making messes. I fear this will never change.
Well, this brings me to my SlowCooker Mushroom Stroganoff recipe.
This is a perfect recipe for the kids to get involved in. There is minimal prep, no cutting, no fire (except boiling the noodles and I suggest you don’t let them help with that bit) and a blender is used. My kids LOVE the blender.
This recipe is vegan. I am lactose intolerant and I have a very bad reaction to cow milk so I always cook dairy free. I chose not to put any meat in this but that was a choice. We only eat meat about once a week and I found that this recipe doesn’t need it anyway.
My kids did most of the work with this one. I was just there to supervise and make sure everyone was holding the measuring spoons correctly. Oh, and clean up the mess. There is always the mess.
Start with the mushrooms
- Mushrooms: there will actually be a lot of sauce so you can use quite a bit. I used 1 pack (250 grams) but could easily have used 2 packs and it would have been fine.
- Chopped onion: a big spoon full of pre-chopped onions if you hate cutting onion as much as I do or 1 onion if you don’t mind chopping.
- Garlic: I used 3 big cloves because I really like garlic but use as much as you think you would like. I like fresh but I have used powdered in a pinch.
- 1 tbsp dried Oregano
- 1 bouillon cube. I totally cheat with these. I love them. They add so much flavor without adding a ton of salt.
- Water: about 1/4 cup.
Wash the mushrooms and put them in your slow cooker.
In a bowl, add everything else and stir it up.
Next add everything into your slow cooker and stir them up to coat.
For how long? This really depends on your slow cooker and the size of the mushrooms. For a normal one I would go with medium and you should be fine. It will take a minimum of 3 hours for them to get good but they can be left in longer. It wont hurt anything.
Now for the vegan “cheese sauce”
I have made this days before and kept it in the fridge till I needed it so feel free to prep ahead but don’t add it in until just before you are going to eat it.
- Raw cashews: I use a 250 gram pack from the shop. This comes out to just about 1 1/2 cups
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast: you can find this at health food stores and most grocery stores
- 3 tbsp lemon juice
- 1 tbsp of mustard
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- Nut milk: I don’t think it really matters what kind but it will effect the flavor slightly. I generally use almond milk but I have used full fat coconut milk from a can and it was delicious (slightly sweeter but not in a very noticeable way). Use enough to get a nice creamy texture. It generally takes me about 1/2 cup to get the thickness I want. Think pudding.
Put the first 7 ingredients in a blender and get it started. Add the milk slowly until it starts to spin nicely.
When you are ready to eat, put the sauce into the slow cooker with the mushrooms.
I add in the “cheese” just before I start the noodles. This gives it a chance to warm up so everything is done at the same time.
This recipe is very adaptable. You could put cubed chicken in the slow cooker at the beginning and I’m sure it would turn out great. Or bacon. MMMMmmmmm bacon. If you want more crispy bacon you could sprinkle it on top. I will sprinkle goat cheese on top of the kids. It’s amazing on it’s own though!
I would like to thank my kids for helping me prepare this today. Half a package of cut onion dumped on the floor was the only casualty so I call it a win!