I come from a family of foodies – my grandparents owned a restaurant, my aunt was in the restaurant business and great uncles owned a fruit stand.  I am also 1/2 Greek & Lebanese, these cultures are known for their delicious.

My Dad also happens to be a great cook and grew up helping my Grandparents at their restaurant.  I was visiting him this weekend and we made a Moroccan Chickpea & Vegetable Stew.

Moroccan Chickpea & Vegetable Stew
(recipe from Urban Herbivore, feature in the Toronto Star 2/12/11)

Ingredients

2 tbsp olive oil
1 small yellow onion, diced
1 rib celery, sliced
1 medium carrot, peeled and sliced into rounds (we used 2)
2 tbsp garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup peeled ginger, finely chopped
1 1/2 tsp whole cumin seeds
3/4 tsp whole caraway seeds
1/4 tsp ground cloves
2 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 3/4 inch chunks
3/4 lb celery root, peeled and cut into 3/4 inch chunks
19-oz can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
28-oz can diced tomatoes
1/4 cup soy sauce
1 cup water
salt & pepper to taste
parsley for garnish

Directions

1. In large pot, heat oil over medium heat.  Add onions, celery and carrots.  Cook, stirring, for 7 mins.
2. Reduce heat to medium-low.  Add garlic and ginger.  Cook, stirring, for 2 mins.
3. Add cumin, caraway and cloves; cook 1 minutes.
4. Add sweet potatoes, celery root, chickpeas, tomatoes with juices, soy sauce and water.  Raise heat to high.  When mixture starts bubbling, cover and reduce heat to maintain gentle simmer.
5. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are tender, about 30 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper.
6. Ladle stew into warmed bowls.  Sprinkle with garnish and serve.

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We agreed that next time we cook this to cut back on the ginger and serve over a bed of brown rice or quinoa.  Overall, a really easy to prepare, delicious, healthy and fragrant meal.

I also left Dad’s with a package of cookies, banana-chocolate chip-walnut loaf and roasted beets.

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Have a great weekend everyone!

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