If you are looking for a warming meal during winter this savory vegetable stew recipe is a perfect choice.
Hardy Winter Herbs Flavor Seasonal Soups and Stews
Savory Vegetable Stew Recipe
Serves 6 to 8
With rice or couscous, a bowl of this hearty stew is a perfect supper for a cold winter evening.
3 tablespoons fruity olive oil
1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onion
2 large cloves garlic, pressed
2 cups sliced celery
1 tablespoon ground coriander seed
1 teaspoon ground cumin seed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground clove
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried
2 tablespoons chopped fresh sweet marjoram or mild oregano or 1 teaspoon dried
2 cups sliced carrots
3 cups peeled sweet potato chunks, 1 inch in diameter
1 cup French green lentils, well rinsed
3 cups chopped fresh or canned tomatoes, with juice
4 to 5 cups vegetable broth or water to cover vegetables
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper or more to taste
1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
Salt to taste
2 cups thinly sliced kale leaves, tough center stem removed
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish
2 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh spearmint, for garnish
Steamed rice or couscous
In large, heavy pan such as a Dutch oven, heat olive oil; gradually add onion, garlic and celery, sautéing until softened but not browned. Add seeds, spices and herbs along with carrots, sweet potatoes, lentils and tomatoes. Cover with vegetable broth or water and bring to boil. Reduce heat, cover, and cook about 30 to 45 minutes until potatoes are tender and liquids are slightly reduced; stir occasionally, adding more broth if needed to keep vegetables covered. Add black pepper, cayenne and salt, stirring carefully. Stir in kale and cook until softened. Add fresh cilantro and spearmint just before serving, accompanied with rice or couscous.
Note: Other vegetables could be used, as well as white potatoes or dried beans substituted for lentils. We prefer French green lentils sold with the seed coat on because they keep their shape, yet cook quickly. Red or yellow lentils, popular in the Middle East, are equally delicious but will cook to a puree. Eggplant would be especially good, as would winter squash or pumpkin. Let your imagination and the produce market be your guide.