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Pepper pot stew with dumplings

17 Mar

This stew is taken from a Levi Root’s recipe, but I have added and removed some ingredients to make it vegan! The original recipe calls for coconut milk, but as I live with somebody with a terrible nut allergy unfortunately I can’t use it! I also think coconut milk can make spicy things too sweet, but by all means add a can if you like. It is hot, so if you prefer a milder taste just use one scotch or even half if you are a real whimp.

  • 4 sprigs fresh thyme , leaves only
  • 6 all spice berries OR half tsp ground all spice
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and finely chopped
  • 4 inch piece of ginger, peeled and finely sliced
  • 1 onion peeled and chopped
  • 1.2l/2 pints vegetable stock mixed with 2 tsp yeast extract
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 450g yam/potato cut into 3cm pieces
  • 400g sweet potato cut into 4cm pieces
  • 450g pumpkin/squash peeled and cut into 4cm pieces
  • 4 large spring onions, trimmed, lightly crushed with a knife
  • 1 1/2 scotch bonnets, finely chopped
  • 1 400g can butter beans
  • 150g spinach or callaloo, leaves only, washed and shredded

For the dumplings –

  • 150g plain flour
  • pinch salt
  • 5-6 tbsp cold water

1. Place thyme leaves, all spice, bay leaf, garlic, ginger onion and stock into large, heavy based lidded saucepan. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer. Cover and simmer for 20-25 minutes.

2. Add the vegetables, scotch bonnets and butter beans to the pan. Stir and return the mixture to a simmer, covered for a further 15-20 minutes.

3. Meanwhile make the dumplings. In a large bowl mix flour and salt. Add water little by little stirring until the mixture becomes a smooth dough. Set aside.

4. After the stew has cooked for 20 minutes add the callaloo or spinach, stir and simmer for 5 mins.

5. Meanwhile pinch 20-24 small pieces from the dough and roll into balls, using up all the dough. Add each dumpling to the pot as it is rolled and replace the lid. Continue to simmer for 8-10 minutes until the veg is tender, the sauce is thick and the dumplings have cooked through.

*I like my stew to have a thicker, almost gravy like sauce, so I mixed 2 tsp of cornflour with a little cold water to form a paste, then added it bit by bit to the simmering stew until desired consistency is achieved.*



20 Feb

Serves 4

  • 400g can chickpeas (drained)
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 small red onion roudhly chopped
  • Handful flat leaf parsley
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp harissa paste or chili powder
  • 2tbsp plain flour
  • 2tbsp sunflower/rapeseed oil
  • 1/2 tsp salt

1. Pat the chickpeas dry with kitchen paper. Tip into a food processor with onion, garlic, parsley, spices, flour and salt.

2. Form into little falafels (about 1 1/2 inch diameter). Keeping them small gives a crispier texture.

3. Heat oil in frying pan and fry falafels over a medium heat for around 6 minutes on each side or until golden all over.

Try making our simple tomato chili salsa to accompany your falafels, a perfect combination!

Carrot Soup

20 Feb

Serves 4

  • 2tsp cumin seeds
  • 2tsp coriander seeds
  • 2tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 red chilli or 2tsp chili seeds
  • 600g carrots, washed and grated
  • 140g split red lentils
  • 1 1/2 litre hot vegetable stock
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Fresh coriander to garnish

1. Heat large saucepan and dry fry cumin and coriander seeds for 1 minute until they start to jump around the pan.

2. Add olive oil into pan and heat for 1 minute. Take care to ensure the seeds do not brown. Add onion, garlic and chili and fry over a low heat until onions are soft golden, around 10 minutes.

3. Add all other ingredients and simmer for 20-30 minutes until carrots and lentils have softened. Whizz up in the pan with a stick blender or transfer bit by bit into a food processor to blend.

4. Season to taste and garnish with fresh coriander. Perfect served with dumplins or crusty bread!