Comforting winter stew with cauliflower, chickpeas and chocolate
Serves 4 | 30-60min | Easy
There are few things that are more comforting than a rich, hearty, and slightly spicy stew. You could maybe convince me that a post-sauna evening snack in front a fireplace could be more comforting, but besides that, nothing beats a good stew or chili.
The key to any good stew, or chili (vegetarian of course), is the simmer. Lotta often makes fun of me for loving to let stews and soups simmer for ridiculous amounts of time, but I'm sticking by it, letting a soup or stew simmer for long enough will really let all the flavours combine and will make or break your stew.
That might be slightly hyperbolic, but you get my point. Let the damn stew simmer.
The good thing with stews is that they're basically the easiest thing to make. Just throw a bunch of stuff you like into a saucepan and let it simmer. Done.
So let's get to it then.
1 small head of cauliflower
400g canned chickpeas (250g drained weight)
400g canned tomatoes (use whole tomatoes, they're usually a lot tastier than crushed tomatoes)
400g canned black beans (250g drained weight)
50g cabbage (a handful)
1 tbsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp grated ginger
1 red chili
50 g dark chocolate (we use one that is 90% cocoa)
- Start by chopping the onion, chili, and carrots (into nice thick chunks)
- Fry the cumin seeds, ginger and chopped chili in a dash of oil in a large saucepan (the largest one you own) for a short while until it smells delicious
- Toss in the onion and fry for a minute, remember to stir often so the spices don't burn
- Throw in the carrots and chopped cabbage and toss them around in all the brilliant spices
- (Optional: If you have some leftover red wine, this is the moment to use it. Pour a big dash over everything and let it boil off for a short while, then continue with the rest of the recipe)
- Pour the canned tomatoes over everything and turn down the heat slightly
- Add everything, except the chocolate and salt, and let the stew boil slowly until the carrots are done. (Add some water if it looks a bit dry)
- Optional: If you have the time, let the stew simmer on a low heat for an hour, it'll just get better
- Finish the stew by adding the dark chocolate to it and stirring it until it has blended in completely
The thing I love about stews, besides the complex and fantastic flavours, is the simplicity. They're a perfect way to use up whatever you have left in the fridge at the end of the week, without sacrificing any of the taste of your early and mid-week meals that were super planned out. So as with all of our recipes, go nuts and experiment! Let us know if you hit upon a great idea or a new exciting spice combination!