Saturday, July 25, 2015

Hearty Vegetarian Entrée- Marrakesh Stew

Marrakesh Stew with Carrots, Potatoes, Butternut Squash, 
and Eggplant over Couscous

I recently served this beautifully fragrant Moroccan Marrakesh Stew to my vegetarian cousins.  I found the recipe, which was contributed by a reader, on Martha Stewart’s website.  The instructions were a bit overly simplified for me.  I could have used a bit more guidance.  All of the vegetables (one-inch pieces of carrot, potato, and butternut squash ) except the eggplant were added at the same time, but to me, the cook times are not the same.  For example, one-inch carrot pieces will take longer to cook than one-inch cubes of butternut squash.  The vegetables were to have been cooked in the Dutch oven pot, with one tablespoon of oil and the spices, until beginning to brown, in about 5 minutes.  It took a heck of a lot more oil than one tablespoon, and I could not accomplish this browning.  The spices however made the kitchen smell heavenly. 

I have made some revisions to the original recipe below, as to how I plan to make Marrakesh Stew next time.  I advise to either cut the carrots smaller, or cook them for a while before adding the potatoes, then adding the squash and eggplant. 

2-3 Tbsp coconut oil or olive oil
1 large red onion, diced
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground coriander
½ tsp cayenne pepper
½ tsp ground allspice
4 large carrots, cut into ½” pieces
2 potatoes, peeled and cut into ¾” pieces
1 small butternut squash, cut into ¾” pieces
Salt & pepper
1 (14 oz) can diced tomatoes
1 qt or liter box of vegetable broth
1 medium eggplant, cut into ¾” pieces
1 cup dried chickpeas, soaked and cooked with salt as needed (or use canned)
Cooked couscous for serving

1- In a 6- to 8-quart Dutch oven pot, heat oil on medium high. 
2- Add diced onion and cook in the hot oil, stirring occasionally until soft, 5-10 minutes. 
3- Add spices to onions and oil, and cook until fragrant, about 1-2 minutes. 
4- Add carrots and broth.  Cover and cook about 20 minutes. 
5- Add potatoes and cook covered 10 minutes.  Add water if needed to cover vegetables. 
6- Add butternut squash, eggplant, tomatoes, salt, and pepper.  Add water or additional broth if needed to cover vegetables.  Cook covered 20 minutes. 
7- Add chickpeas, and cook until chickpeas are completely warmed, and all vegetables are tender. 
8- Serve over couscous. 

Pot of Marakesh Stew with fragrant spices- cumin, coriander, cinnamon, 
cayenne, and allspice

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