Hi friends! Who here has shovelled yet this year? Yup, winter is here, and I for one am all about it! To warm up your evenings, here’s a new easy recipe! This is a super hearty, cozy, rich, thick stew made from tasty tomatoes and a bizarre but amazing pairing of peanuts! West African cooking is known for amazing peanut tomato stew combinations, which inspired this dish. Add some heat with chilli pepper flakes and smooth it out with amazing peanut butter and a puree of sweet potato and zucchini. All vegan- creamy yet no dairy, no animal products whatsoever. Super filling and very, very high in protein, this is a complete meal in itself.
There are even red lentils snuck in there to thicken the soup up (a great way to sneak them into your diet). Serve a small portion of stew as an appetizer (be warned it’s really filling), or with a salad or crusty bread. You can also up the lentils to 3/4c and serve this very thick stew over rice as a meal. It’s great leftover and freezes well too. The stew has a really unique but incredible flavour- a new favourite just in time for the chilly winter.
Creamy Peanut Tomato Stew
-Chop one large onion into small pieces, and mince some fresh garlic (or use powdered). Sautee with a little oil in a larger soup pot over medium heat.
-Add two small zucchini and one large sweet potato to your pot, chopped into small pieces.
*I always leave the skin on my potatoes but peel if you prefer.
-Sautee until your vegetables begin to soften (approx. 5 minutes)
-Add 8c. of cold water to the pot, and add two vegetable stock bouillon cubes
*Be sure your bouillon cubes are vegan/vegetarian not beef or chicken. You can use veggie stock in place of the water or in addition to if preferred. Making your own veggie stock is a great idea to keep on hand!
-Next, add one large can (796ml) of diced stewed tomatoes, including the juice.
*I try to get tomatoes with no salt added if I can.
-Add 1/2 c. dry red lentils (rinsed already), 1tsp dry ginger, and 1-2 tsp of crushed chilli peppers flakes (adjust to your taste).
-Give everything a good stir, cover partially and bring to a boil. Lower heat and simmer on low for about 20 minutes, or until lentils and veggies are cooked.
-Increase your burner to medium low heat, and slowly stir in 1c of all-natural peanut butter.
*If you’re not a huge peanut fan or if you’re apprehensive about adding this to your soup for the first time, feel free to add less or taste as you so! Just be sure to mix it in really well.
Be sure your peanut butter is unsweetened and preferably unsalted. I prefer natural peanut butter as it’s made of nothing but peanuts and it’s natural oil, but it’s really your preference and availability. If using sweetened peanut butter, start with 1/2c and adjust to taste. It will be very sweet though!
-When your peanut butter is totally incorporated, bring soup to a low boil, uncovered, string consistently. After it reaches a boil, turn heat on low and remove from your heat.
-Finally, I took a potato masher and mashed my soup to make it more of a puree (mainly removing the bigger chunks of potato and zucchini). If you have an immersion hand blender or a food processor, you can blend your soup to a puree if you’d like, or leave it as it is!
Serve garnished with fresh peanuts, minced tomato, green onion or fresh cilantro!
That’s it! Enjoy!