We’re back with another tasty wellbeing idea to get you through lockdown. This time we have a recipe for a delicious veg-packed aubergine stew. Topped with a dollop of vegan yogurt and served with some crusty bread, this stew makes a healthy and nutritious vegan meal – perfect for Veganuary!
This is one of those glorious recipes that gets better with time, so if you have any leftover, stick it in the fridge and enjoy for lunch the next day. You can serve this dish with rice or couscous, but it also goes well with a hunk of crusty bread to soak up the sauce.
Vegan Greek-Style Aubergine Stew
• 1 large aubergine (roughly 350g), cut into 1.5cm cubes
• 2 tbsp olive oil
• ½ onion, finely chopped
• ½ green bell pepper, finely chopped
• 1 small carrot, finely chopped
• 3 large garlic cloves, minced
• 1 bay leaf (optional)
• 1 tsp paprika
• ½ tsp ground coriander
• ½ tsp dried oregano
• ½ tsp cinnamon
• ¼ tsp turmeric
• ¼ black pepper
• 2 x 400g can chopped tomatoes
• 400g can chickpeas (reserve the canning liquid)
• flat leaf parsley to serve (optional)
• vegan yogurt to serve (optional)
• crusty bread to serve (optional)
1. Prepare all the ingredients and have them ready in front of you – again, it always makes cooking much easier.
2. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C / 180 degrees C (fan).
3. Place the aubergine cubes in a colander (or large sieve) over a large bowl or directly over the sink, and sprinkle generously with salt. Set aside for 30 minutes and allow the aubergine to “sweat out” any bitterness. Rinse with water and pat dry.
4. In a large oven-proof casserole dish or stock pot, heat the olive oil over a medium-high heat until hot. Add the onions, peppers, and chopped carrot. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring regularly.
5. Add the garlic, bay leaf (if using), spices, and a dash of salt. Cook for another minute, stirring until fragrant.
6. Now add the aubergine, chopped tomatoes, chickpeas, and reserved chickpea liquid. Stir to combine.
7. Bring to a rolling boil for 10 minutes. Stir often. Remove from the heat, cover with a lid (or some foil) and transfer to the oven.
8. Cook in the oven for 45 minutes until the aubergine is fully cooked through to very tender. (While the aubergine is cooking, be sure to check on it once or twice to see if it needs more liquid. If so, remove from the oven briefly and stir in about 100ml of water at a time.) If you feel the stew is too wet, leave it uncovered in the oven for a little longer.
9. When the aubergine is ready, remove it from the oven and garnish with some freshly chopped parsley (optional).
10. Serve it hot with a side of vegan yogurt, or vegan tzatziki, and some bread (again, optional).
Top tip: This dish would go exceptionally well with couscous or rice. You could also use the left-over bell pepper for crudites with hummus.
Did you have a go at this recipe? If yes, high five! Well done you! Why not share your attempt on Instagram and tag us @unikentfood?
And finally, don’t forget the Student Support and Wellbeing team are on hand to support you if you’re experiencing distress arising from psychological, emotional or mental health issues. Visit their website for more information and advice. Alternatively, follow @UniKentSSW on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook for bitesize guidance and information to help you keep calm during lockdown.