chick pea stew

In lunch on October 6, 2010 at 1:07 am

i’ve been working my way through a fabulous new cookbook from the editors of food & wine called best of the best: the best recipes from the 25 best cookbooks of the year, including tomato-lentil soup, sweet corn soup and an amazing artichoke and clam risotto. as you know, i’m not a huge fan of cookbooks, but since this one is a compilation, i feel like i’m getting extra bang for my buck. and, so far, i’ve been a huge fan of the results. (maybe i should actually be using more cookbooks…?)

this chick pea stew (from martha rose shulman’s mediterranean harvest) was really fabulous – great complex sweet/tangy/spicy flavor, and the chick peas ended up having an amazing creamy texture. i took it for lunch every day one week and didn’t get bored at all. plus, it is healthy and filling – and a cinch to make! i’m definitely going to add it to my fall/winter lunch rotation.

start by heating 2 tablespoons olive oil in a soup pot (the recipe called for a large skillet, which i do not own) and adding 2 big-chopped onions.

cook until tender, and then add 4 garlic cloves, chopped, 1 teaspoon fennel seeds and 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, both crushed. i didn’t have the fennel, so i just used cumin.

cook another 5 to 8 minutes until the onion has colored slightly.

add 1 teaspoon brown sugar and mix well, then stir in 1 tablespoon white wine vinegar (i used cider vinegar because it was all i had) and 4 tomatoes, peeled and chopped. very unorthidoxily (you know what i mean…) i peeled my tomatoes with a vegetable peeler. your other option is the boiled water method, which i have no time for.

the recipe says you could use a 14 ounce can of tomatoes instead. it also calls for 1/2 teaspoon aleppo pepper. i neither knew what it is nor did i have any.

cook, stirring, for about 10 minutes until the tomatoes have cooked down a bit.

stir in 6 ounces spinach leaves, 30 ounces of canned chick peas (that’s two of the regular 15 oz cans) and about a teaspoon of salt.

add enough water so the stew can simmer, but not so much that it’s soupy. i think i added about a cup and a half, but again, it will depend on the shape of the pan you’re using.

simmer for about 20 to 25 minutes. add salt to taste.

serving suggestion (which i ignored) is to add 1/4 cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, dill and mint, lemon wedges and plain yogurt.

  1. Loving the emphasis on stews and soups! One of the best parts of fall. Thanks!

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