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Mock Beef Stew

- 4 tbsp (60 ml) olive oil
- 2 large onions, chopped
- 1 shallot, chopped
- 2 medium potatoes, chopped into 1/4" (1 cm) pieces
- 2 medium carrots, sliced 1/4" (1 cm) thick
- 1 red pepper, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/4 tsp (2 ml) each salt and pepper
- 28 oz (840 ml) can diced tomatoes
- 1 1/2 cups (360 ml) vegetable stock
- 1/4 tsp (2 ml) dry basil
- 1 zucchini, peeled and sliced
- 1 pkg mock beef strips (try Yves Beef Veggie Tenders or gardein beefless tips), cut into 2" (5 cm) pieces
- 1 tbsp (15 ml) flour
- 1/4 cup (60 ml) water

In 2 tbsp (30 ml) of the olive oil, cook the onions and shallot over medium heat until softened. Add the potatoes, carrots, red pepper, bay leaf, salt and pepper. Stir well, cover, lower heat and simmer for about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, vegetable stock and basil and simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes. Add the zucchini for the last 10 minutes of cooking.

In a separate pan, using the remaining olive oil, brown the veggie tenders (about 4 minutes per side.) Add to the other mixture.

Mix the flour and water well and add to the stew. Heat until the mixture thickens slightly. Remove the bay leaf. Serve with crusty French bread (good for dipping.) Serves 4.