This is one vegetarian dish that even the die-hard meat eaters will enjoy! The quality of your veggies will turn this from ordinary to amazing and full of flavor. Its filling and incredible versatile based on the vegetables and herbs you use. This veg stew is perfect over a boiled potato or polenta. With the eggs from our hens, we love poaching an egg and placing it atop this gorgeous garden stew, adding a little protein and making it into more of a meal. Plus, eggs are hot right now!! Which just cracks us up (who comes up with these things?! By the way kale is out and cauliflower is in!)
Garden Vegetable Stew
serves about 6
This is just the base for the veggies - use what you've got/like/grow. Add in potatoes if you want, etc.
1 long eggplant
1 bulb of fennel
2 cloves garlic
salt & pepper
a couple of large tomatoes, diced or 1 jar of whole crushed tomatoes
herbs of your choice (rosemary, thyme, bay leaf etc)
optional: capers, olives
Dice all your vegetables in a large dice, keeping them separate. Since its a stew the sizing isn’t exact. But don’t mix all the veggies together in a bowl.
In a large heavy pot, with a little bit of olive oil on medium high heat, sauté the onion for a few minutes. Season with salt & pepper. Then remove from the pot. We are just looking to start the onions cooking.
Repeat the same process, a little bit of olive oil, salt & pepper, sauté for 2 minutes or so and then remove, with each of the remaining vegetable except the tomatoes.
Keep an eye on your pan heat - you don’t want it too hot or too cool: too hot and they will burn your vegetables, too cool and you’ll sweat instead of sauté the vegetables.
Then return all the vegetables to the pot, together, along with the tomatoes and your herbs (and capers/olives if you like). Bring the pot up to a simmer and let slowly simmer until all the vegetables are tender. OR I like to pop it in a 375 F/190 C degrees oven, uncovered for about 45 minutes to an hour or until the vegetables are soft and the liquid has reduced some.
Check your seasoning, remove the herb stems and finish with good extra virgin olive oil on top.
If you like, poach an egg and place atop or serve with boiled potatoes or grilled polenta. Makes a great hearty vegetarian dish. It will get better as it sits in the fridge. Change up the vegetables as you like or play with the spices.