Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja Seitan

My husband and I went on a long walk in the gently falling snow.  It was big, fluffy snowglobe flakes.  It was as though everyone decided to call off of work.  The streets were empty.  The sidewalks were empty.  A real winter wonderland.  There couldn't be a more perfect day for a slow cooker meal.

Today's recipe is inspired by the Cuban national dish, ropa vieja.  Ropa vieja translates in English to "old clothes", because the shredded beef and vegetables look like rags.  The flavor is a well-developed blend of crushed tomatoes, dry white wine, vegetable broth, oregano and crushed red pepper.  While I used seitan as the "meat" for this rendition, you could also use jackfruit for a variation.

Top with cilantro, give it a squeeze of lime, and enjoy over rice with Cuban Black Beans.  Maybe some fried plantains on the side?  A bit of avocado?  I'm hungry just thinking about it!

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Vegan Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja Seitan

1 large red onion, cut in crescents

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 8 ounce packages seitan, chopped in strips

1 28 ounce can of crushed tomatoes

15 green olives

1 green pepper, cut in strips

1 red pepper, cut in strips

3 carrots, cut in strips

½ cup dry white wine

1 ½ cubes bouillon (vegetable, fake beef, etc)

¼ cup water

2 bay leaves

1 tsp paprika

1 tsp dried oregano

½-1 tsp crushed red pepper

1 tsp cumin

Juice from ½ lime

1 tsp agave

1. Sauté red onion with a dash of salt in olive oil over medium heat until it is transparent.  Add to a slow cooker with everything else listed above. 

2. Cover and cook on HIGH for 4-5 hours.  Taste, adjust seasoning.  Serve with Cuban Black Beans, brown rice, lime, cilantro, and fried plantains.  

Vegan Slow Cooker Ropa Vieja.jpg