Friday, September 13, 2013

Stewed Indian-spiced eggplant, cauliflower, and chickpeas


It's the time of year when the produce harvest is really coming to its peak. That means I've been doing a lot of canning and coming up with creative ways to work as many vegetables as possible into our meals. This pot of stewed veggies is inspired by this recipe. I loved this dish because it used up a lot of stuff from my fridge - 1/2 head cauliflower, three little eggplants, a chile, onion.... plus some diced tomatoes I had in the fridge (I ran out of sterilized jars when doing my tomato canning over the weekend). On top of that, this dish is simple and really delicious. I've said before that I have a very well-stocked supply of spices. This is essential if you want to try to cook Indian food. I slowly built up my spices, often purchasing them in bulk, at the farmers' market, or at an Indian market near us, to get lower prices (they are much pricier in the regular grocery store). Once you have the spices, however, dishes like this are a cinch to put together and very healthy! They are very forgiving, too -- you don't have to use exact measurements of the vegetables and you can use different ones depending in what you have on hand.

Give this dish a try while all these veggies are in season. It makes a lot - so you'll be able to feed about six people. It makes great leftovers for lunch and would also be good to freeze for later. Serve with Basmati or other rice and top with plain yogurt that you've stirred a little fresh lemon juice into for a complete meal. 


Stewed Indian-spiced eggplant, cauliflower, and chickpeas
2 tablespoons coconut oil or ghee
3 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric
1-1/2 teaspoons mustard seeds
1/2 teaspoon coriander
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 cup diced onion
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon freshly grated ginger root
1 green chile (such as jalapeno), seeded and minced
about 4 heaped cups cauliflower florets
about 4 heaped cups diced eggplant
3 cups freshly diced tomatoes
1/3 cup water
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas, drained

for serving:
1/3 cup plain yogurt
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
rice, such as Basmati, cooked to package directions
Naan or flatbread, optional

In a large, deep skillet, heat the coconut oil or ghee until hot. Add the spices (garam masala through cumin). Stir well and toast for about 1 minute. Add the onion, garlic, ginger, and chile. Stir well and cook until fragrant (turn down the heat if the mustard seeds start popping all over the place).

Add the cauliflower and stir. Cook for about 2-3 minutes, stirring often. Add the eggplant, tomatoes, water, and salt. Stir well and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until the cauliflower is fork tender. Stir in the chickpeas and simmer until they are hot. Taste for seasonings.

Serve hot over rice. Top with the combined yogurt and lemon juice.


What was I cooking one year ago?: Chicken tikka masala
Two years ago?: beef and wild mushroom stew
Three?: celery root and apple puree

17 comments:

  1. I absolutely LOVE indian food and this looks so flippin' tasty to me. YUM!

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  2. This looks soo good!
    Love the colors and the versatility of the dish and the yogurt lemon topping sounds delightful.

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  3. Wow! I can imagine the lovely aroma of this appetizing dish! YUMMY! ;)

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  4. Oh love all the ingredients in this warm and comforting dish! Looks like the perfect fall dinner.

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  5. Lovely dish! Indian food is one of my favorites, and I'm a big fan of anything that includes dried legumes or pulses. Chickpeas are the best! Wonderful stuff - thanks.

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  6. So flavoursome and delicious..this veggie stew has everything I LOVE!

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  7. I love all the veggies in these, it looks scrumptious! And the chickpea addition is genius, they make every dish better! x

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  8. I love how you're using cauliflower in this recipe, can't wait to try!

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  9. One bite of this and my mouth would be bursting with all sorts of flavors and my tummy would be very happy! Love dishes like this.

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  10. I love Indian dishes because of the spices. This looks delicious!

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  11. I love Indian food and this totally up my alley.

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  12. Loving the combination of vegetables and spices in this dish. It is rainy outside, so warming spice is a perfect way to end the day.

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  13. This dish looks just perfect for all the cold weeks ahead of us!

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  14. I am a pure veggie and I love to eat all indian spicy dishes, and this looks yummy .

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  15. So called Indian grocery stores are there in plenty in the US but it is really difficult to find something which caters to all the needs of us poor people who are staying far, far away from their home! Recently I have heard about a good Indian store in Cooper City and I am thinking of going there to check it out.

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