Friday, July 10, 2009

Summer Stew

We put in our vegetable garden late this year--we've been keeping a garden journal for the past eight years, and this was the latest mobilization in that timeframe. Something about teenagers tends to fill our time in the spring, but we finally found some time towards the end of May to get everything in.

I don't think we'll have any peas this year, but the beans are looking good and on Thursday I harvested our first fingerling eggplants. I picked some very small zucchinis to go with them. They grow about an inch an hour, so I wanted to get them before they turned into Fred Flintstone clubs. Then I turned to the Internet for fresh ideas on what to do with the fresh veggies and what I had in my pantry.

I found a promising recipe and modified it enough to suit my own taste and renamed it...

Summer Stew

Eggplant, cut into ½ inch cubes (mine where so small I simply sliced them, and occasionally halved the slices)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 cup chopped onion (I used half a red onion left over from salad the night before)
4 cloves garlic, chopped (actually squeezed in the garlic press)
1/2 cup Basmati rice
Zucchini, cut into ½ inch cubes (same sliced rounds as the eggplant)
½ bell pepper, diced (I like yellow best, or orange, rarely red and never green)
3 fresh or canned tomatoes pureed or 1 cup of sauce (I finally ran out of frozen sauce from last summer's tomato harvest, so I used my final can of diced tomatoes from the pantry)
2 cups chicken stock (we roast a turkey so that we can make stock and freeze it in 1 cup portions)
salt, or to taste
red pepper flakes
chopped fresh basil
chopped fresh parsley
1 sprig fresh rosemary

1. Place eggplant in a colander and sprinkle with salt.
2. Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or large pot. Rinse eggplant and pat dry. Saute with onion, zucchini, bell pepper, and garlic.
3. Stir in rice and spices/herbs; then add tomatoes and stock. Cook over medium-high heat until mixture reaches a low boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes, or until vegetables are tender and rice is cooked—should be consistency of risotto.
4. Remove from heat and remove rosemary.

Delicious hot or cold.

Next week's dinner.


  1. And I thought Summer Stew was simply my nickname! Sounds tasty...

  2. No, your nicknames are Weaver Stew and Sissawas Stew, if I remember correctly :)