Is that an aubergine in your pocket or are you … oh it is an aubergine
At their best from July to September, now is the perfect time to get your hands on the nations favourite emoji. The aubergine. With its glossy purple skin and spongy centre, this vegetable loves nothing more than to soak up flavours and I have just the recipe! This aubergine and chickpea stew is warm with cinnamon spice but fresh with mint and yogurt, perfect to see out the last of the Summer nights before welcoming Autumn in all her golden glory.
Aubergine & chickpea stew
Serves 4 / Hands on time 30 mins / Total time 1 hr /V Vn Gf Df
1 tsp olive oil
1 white onion, finely diced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 aubergines, cut into large chunks
6 medium sized tomatoes, cut into eighths
1 can tinned chickpeas, drained
500ml vegetable stock, I use Knorr stock pots
3 bay leaves
1 ½ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp smoked paprika
1 tsp cumin
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp dried parsley
100ml vegan red wine
Generous handful of fresh mint leaves, chopped
Greek or dairy free yogurt (optional)
Drizzle of Pomora extra virgin olive oil
Serve with crusty bread, couscous or even mashed potato (depending on the weather)
1. Finely chop the onion and the garlic and add them to a large cooking pot with a teaspoon of oil. Over a medium heat, sweat the onions and garlic for around 5 minutes or until softened (if the onions are getting a little too much colour, add a dash of water to the pot to help them to steam).
2. Add 1 tsp of cumin, turmeric, smoked paprika and 1 and a half tsp of cinnamon then give it a good stir. Add a little water to the mix if again it’s looking a little dry and to allow the spices to release their lovely aromas.
3. Cook the spices for a couple of minutes before adding the freshly chopped tomatoes, 500ml of vegetable stock, 100ml red wine, the aubergine chunks, drained chickpeas, 3 bay leaves and 1 tsp of dried parsley. Give it a good mix and season well with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil.
4. Turn the heat down to a simmer, pop the lid a jar and cook for 15 minutes stirring occasionally. After 15 minutes, take the lid off, give it another stir and continue to cook without the lid for a further 15 minutes (this allows the sauce to thicken). Meanwhile, use this time to prepare your chosen accompaniment – I like to serve it with couscous or with a loaf of crusty bread on warmer days and mashed potato on cooler ones.
5. Take the stew off the heat and carefully pick out the bay leaves. Divide into bowls along your chosen accompaniment, a generously sprinkle of fresh mint, yogurt (optional), and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.
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