You Need This Greek Eggplant Stew in Your Freezer
Yes, this is a stew you want in your freezer at all times. The cauliflower is tender and falling apart, the eggplant is silky and practically melts in your mouth. The kalamata olives are briny, the tomato sauce is spiked with cinnamon, and it’s the best kind of comfort food because you feel fantastic after eating it instead of feeling sluggish and tired. (I’m looking at you, mug brownies.) Greek Eggplant Stew is everything we need right now.
There’s someone in a local forum I participate in who asks every morning, “How are you holding up these days?” It’s such a simple, small way to connect with others at a time when so many of us feel isolated. So: how are you holding up these days? I have to admit that this hasn’t been all that difficult for me since we were already doing a form of self-isolation during cold and flu season because of my daughter’s prematurity. She has both a weaker immune system than full-term babies and chronic lung disease, so I’ve been used to ordering groceries online, staying inside, washing and sanitizing my hands constantly, etc. That, of course, doesn’t change how surreal these past few weeks have felt.
I’ve been writing about my adventures cooking with what we have on hand and what I’m able to order from the grocery store, but I also thought I’d share some more recipes here on the Green Plate Club blog. (For ad-free access to all of my recipes and printable meal plans, you can subscribe for $6 a month.)
Back to the Greek Eggplant Stew! You can make it a few days in advance and keep it in the fridge; it’s one of those glorious recipes that gets better with time. It can be frozen for two or three months too. You can serve it with your favorite whole grain, but it also does well with a hunk of crusty bread to soak up the sauce. Add chickpeas or white beans to up the protein if you like or make it as is because it’s pretty darn good just like that.Print
Greek Eggplant Stew With Cauliflower and Olives
I adapted this from a New York Times chicken stew recipe. It’s quickly become one of my favorite freezer meals, especially for chilly winter days. If you love olives, you might want to up the kalamatas to half a cup.
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 45 minutes
- Total Time: 55 minutes
- Yield: 4 servings 1x
- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large red onion, chopped
- Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
- 1 large eggplant, cubed
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 (28-ounce) can chopped tomatoes, with juice, pulsed in a food processor or with an immersion blender
- 2 cups vegetable broth
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ½ teaspoon dried thyme, or 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
- 1 small cauliflower, broken into bite-sized florets
- 1/3 cup kalamata olives, pitted and cut in half
- 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley or cilantro, to garnish
- Rice or other whole grains like freekeh or quinoa, for serving
- Heat the olive oil in a Dutch oven or large pot over medium heat. Add the onion with a pinch of salt and cook, stirring often, for about 5 minutes or until softened. Reduce the heat to low, cover and let the onion cook for 5 minutes more, stirring from time to time, until it’s just beginning to caramelize. Use the vinegar to deglaze the pot by scraping up any burnt onion bits.
- Add the eggplant and garlic to the pot. Cook for 3-5 minutes more, or until the eggplant is starting to become tender. Add the tomatoes, broth, cinnamon and thyme and bring to a slow boil, stirring occasionally.
- Add the cauliflower; cover and reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer for another 30 minutes, or until the cauliflower and eggplant is tender.
- Stir in the olives and parsley and season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with rice or your favorite whole grains.