Monday, January 25, 2010

North African Pumpkin Stew 1/25/10

A harmless dish, but not very exciting.
This may have been the fault of my execution. I took a shortcut by using frozen, pre-cooked pumpkin so I only stewed it together for 5 minutes, instead of the 30 minutes called for. If I make this again, using pre-cooked pumpkin, I will probably increase the amount of spices. (I also tossed in some left-over cauliflower.)

North African Pumpkin Stew 1/25/10Serves 4.
Prep time: 15 minutes. Cooking time: 15 minutes. Total time: 30 minutes.

$1.19 per person: Vegetarian & Gluten-free as published.
$1.19 per person: Vegan (replace brown sugar with 1 tablespoon maple syrup)

  • 1 tablespoon safflower or canola oil

  • 1 large onion, cut into 1/2 inch dice (organic)

  • 4 garlic cloves, finely minced

  • 1 or 2 small, fresh, hot chilies (seeded and chopped)

  • 1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger

  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice

  • Salt and pepper, to taste

  • 2 pounds cooking pumpkin, seeded, peeled, and cut into bite-sized cubes (about 5 cups)

  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar (organic)

  • 2 cups cooked kidney beans (organic, see note)

  • 2 cups cooked brown rice (organic)
Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, cover, and cook until tender but not browned, about 5 minutes.

Add the garlic, chilies, ginger, cinnamon, cumin, allspice, and cloves, and cook, stirring, for about 2 minutes.

Add the pumpkin and toss until evenly coated in the spices.

Add 1 cup of water, the brown sugar, and salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low. Cover and simmer until the vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.

Add the beans, and cook until heated through, about 10 minutes.
Serve over brown rice.

NOTES: I generally use dried beans. They take up less storage space and are MUCH less expensive. One pound of soaked beans costs about 40 cents (organic). When is the last time you paid 40 cents/pound for meat as a protien source? Beans usually triple in size when soaked, so for 2 cups cooked beans soak 2/3 cup dried beans overnight. After soaking, simmer covered in water for 1 hour, or in a pressure cooker for 15 minutes. Cooking after soaking will help eliminate bean gas.

From Some Like it Hot: 200 Spicy Vegetarian Recipies from Around the World (1998), page 124.  While this particular recipe didn't excite us very much, it is a very good cookbook.

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