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Recipe: Chick Pea Stew

Sreves 4

Drained yogurt is made by draining the yogurt in a cheesecloth-lined strainer for several hours.

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

2 onions, sliced

4 garlic cloves, chopped

1 teaspoon cumin seeds, crushed

1 teaspoon fennel seeds, crushed

1 teaspoon brown sugar or 2 teaspoons pomegranate molasses

1 tablespoon white wine vinegar, sherry vinegar, or lemon juice

4 tomatoes, peeled and chopped; or 1 (14-ounce) can of tomatoes, drained and chopped

½ teaspoon Aleppo pepper, or ¼ teaspoon sweet paprika and 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper

4 ounces leaf spinach

½ pound dried chick peas, cooked and drained; or 2 (15-ounce) cans chick peas, rinsed and drained

Salt

¼ cup chopped fresh herbs, preferably a mix of flat-leaf parsley, dill and mint

Lemon wedges

Drained yogurt

Heat the oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat and add the onions. Cook, stirring, until tender, about 5 minutes, and add the garlic, cumin and fennel seeds. Cook until the onion has colored slightly, 5 to 8 minutes. Add the sugar and stir together for a minute, then stir in the vinegar, tomatoes and Aleppo pepper or substitutions. Cook, stirring, until the tomatoes have cooked down a bit, about 10 minutes.

Stir in the spinach, chick peas and about 1 teaspoon salt. Add enough water so the dish can simmer. Simmer uncovered over medium heat, stirring often, about 20 to 25 minutes. The stew should be saucy but not watery. Add salt to taste and stir in the herbs. Serve with lemon wedges and yogurt.

From “Mediterranean Harvest: Vegetarian Recipes from the World’s Healthiest Cuisine,” by Martha Rose Shulman

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