A Spicy Stew to Heat Up Winter Nights

Moroccan spices.

Moroccan spices.

I love having a bowl of piping hot soup or stew on cold nights. It’s a simple comfort that nourishes and satisfies. The following Moroccan Stew from Moosewood Restaurant is loaded with spices and vegetables that not only make it flavorful, but also full of health and longevity benefits.
The star of this stew is turmeric, a fragrant spice from the ginger family. It’s yellow pigment, curcumin, has powerful anti-inflammatory properties and is a popular healing compound in Chinese and Indian (Ayurvedic) medicine. Curcumin is also known for its antioxidant and cancer-inhibiting effects. Plus, it has been shown to lower cholesterol and protect the brain from Alzheimer’s. So, by all means, add more than the recipe calls for if you like the taste. Enjoy!

Moroccan Stew
The exotic fragrance of this dish as it’s cooking is almost reason enough to make it. This vegetable stew makes a substantial meal, especially when served with hard-boiled eggs, almonds, and couscous or pita bread, which is how they always serve it at the restaurant.

Ingredients:
1/3 cup olive oil
3 cups coarsely chopped onions
2 garlic cloves, minced or pressed
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon turmeric
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ to 1 teaspoon cayenne
½ teaspoon paprika
1 cup sliced carrots
4 cups cubed sweet potatoes (or butternut squash)
3 cups cubed eggplant
1 green pepper, sliced in strips
4 cups sliced zucchini squash
2 large tomatoes, chopped
1½ cups cooked garbanzo beans
pinch of saffron
¾ cup dried currants or ½ cup raisins (optional)
½ cup chopped parsley (optional)

Method:
In a stew pot, heat the olive oil and sauté the onions for 2-3 minutes. Add the garlic and spices, stirring continuously. Add the vegetables in the order given above, so that the starchier vegetables will cook the longest. Saute after the addition of each vegetable until its color deepens. Stir in the garbanzo beans, the saffron, and the currants or raisins. There should be some liquid at the bottom of the pot from the cooking vegetables. However, if the stew is dry, add ½ cup of tomato juice or water. Cover the stew and simmer on low heat until all the vegetables are tender. Add the parsley just before serving.

Yield:
4-6 servings

About Annette Cain

Annette Cain is an award-winning author, endurance athlete and certified personal trainer.

Known as the Longevity Lady™ Annette helps baby boomers age stronger so their bodies can keep up with their lives. Her ageless lifestyle products and programs provide an easy and balanced approach to becoming lean & limber and living younger longer.

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