Saturday, July 28, 2012

Recipe: Creamy Eggplant Stew

It's been so long since Ian and I have cooked a meal together! It was much easier when Felicity would sit in her bouncer seat on the kitchen table and happily watch us work, but now that she's quite mobile and wants lots of input, we typically have to delegate - one person on dinner, one person on baby watch.

Tonight, we improvised and put her Pack 'n Play in a corner of the kitchen, and were careful to avoid the usual dangers, such as knife-throwing, and flinging of hot vegetables.

This was a really lovely soup; very thick, creamy, and had wonderful depth. We added leeks to this stew because we had one that needed to be used. I'm not sure that it added anything, but it certainly didn't detract from the stew. We also used dried chickpeas (they're cheaper!), cooking them while we did the food prep and started the vegetables.

In addition, this delicious soup is pretty low-cal at about 230 calories per serving, has lots of protein, and is high in iron, vitamin C, and dietary fiber. What's not to love?

Creamy Eggplant Stew
Adapted from The Complete Guide to Vegan Food Substitutions

 2 Tbsp. oil (separated)
1/2 onion, diced
1 leek, chopped and rinsed well (optional)
1 lb eggplant (about two small), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 tsp. salt
3 garlic cloves, minced/crushed
6 oz. tomato paste
1/4 cup natural peanut butter (slightly more if desired)
1-2 Tbsp. garam masala (to taste)
2 1/2 cups water (supplement chickpea water if you cooked them yourself)
16 oz canned chickpeas or 1/2 dry chickpeas, fully cooked
1/4 cup chopped parsley

  1. Heat dutch oven over medium heat, add 1 Tbsp. oil. Add diced onion, and cook until softened. Add leek and eggplant and the rest of the oil. Toss well to coat vegetables and add salt. Cook, stirring often, to soften the egpplant (about eight minutes).
  2. Add garlic, tomato paste, peanut butter, and garam masala. Stir to coat vegetables and cook for one minute until fragrant. Slowly add water (or cooking liquid) and stir to incorporate (veggie mixture will be thick), then add the chickpeas.
  3. Bring stew to a simmer, than reduce heat to low and cover. Cook for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Take off of the heat and let soup rest for a few minutes.
  5. Serve with chopped parsley.
Six Servings.
About 230 calories per bowl, 20 grams of protein

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