Saturday, January 15, 2011

Super Simple, Yummy Stew

This stew is very forgiving. I was missing several ingredients, but it still turned out great. At least my roommate and her friend told me so. I served it with homemade rosemary & garlic pita chips (just add some rosemary and garlic powder to olive oil and brush on pitas when baking - 7 minutes in a 400* oven).

Moroccan Red Lentil-Bean Stew

(from A Beautiful Bowl of Soup by Paulette Mitchell)

1 TBS olive oil

1 cup finely chopped onion

1 tsp saffron threads, crushed

1 TBS hot water

2 tsp curry powder

1 tsp ground cumin

2 tsp minced fresh rosemary (or 1tsp dried rosemary, crushed)

1 tsp fennel seeds

6 cups vegetable stock, heated

1 15-oz can white beans, drained & rinsed

½ cup dried red lentils*

½ cup basmati rice

1 tomato, cut into ½ dice

1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh cilantro

1 TBS tomato paste

Salt, pepper & tobasco sauce to taste

(Note, I didn’t have all the ingredients. I left out the saffron, tomato paste & tobasco, used 2 cups veggie stock and 4 cups water with a veggie bouillon cube & 2 packets of brown GW broth—all unheated, half a can of diced tomatoes w/ green chilies—undrained, and added extra curry powder & cumin. It still came out nice and yummy.)

Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent, about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, mix the saffron with hot water and set aside.

Add the curry powder, cumin, rosemary & fennel seeds to the Dutch oven; stir for about 30 seconds. Stir in saffron mixture and the vegetable stock, beans, lentils, and rice. Increase heat to high and bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cover and simmer, stirring occasionally, until the lentil and rice are tender, about 30 minutes. Stir in tomato, chopped cilantro and tomato paste. Season to taste. Garnish individual servings with springs of cilantro.

It will thicken nicely for leftovers and is just a good the next day.

*Substitute brown lentil for red and increase cooking time to 35 minutes or until lentils are tender.