Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Celebrate Earth Day with a Meatless Recipe

Today, April 22, is Earth Day!

There are lots of silly and not-very-environmental ways to celebrate it (buying grass-scented perfume does NOT count for much, people!). Please, don't get distracted by the commercialism or turn cynical about phonies jumping on the green bandwagon. Just sort through all the options available to you and, starting today, try just one more thing to help the Earth.

You could start shopping with re-usable cloth bags. (Didja see my post, dated yesterday?) Or stop buying water in plastic bottles and use a stainless-steel, practically everlasting water bottle instead, like those available through Kleen Kanteen. You could switch out one more incandescent lightbulb for a long-lasting, environmentally friendly compact fluorescent bulb. Or maybe add one more meatless dinner per week to your dinner lineup. Here's a hearty meatless recipe I love, and even the meat-lovers in my family rave about it:

Moroccan Vegetable Stew

prep: 15 minutes

cook: about 25 minutes

yields: about 5-1/2 cups, or 4 main-dish servings

1 Tbsp. olive oil

1 med. onion, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

2 garlic cloves, crushed with press

1 tsp. curry powder (or more, to taste)

1 tsp. ground cumin (or more, to taste)

1 can (15 to 19 oz.) garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained

1 can (14.5 oz.) stewed tomatoes

1.75 cups vegetable broth or vegetarian chicken-flavored broth

2 large carrots, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces

1 box (10 oz.) plain couscous

1 med. zucchini (8 oz.), cut into 3/4-inch circles

1/3 C. golden raisins

2 tbsp. chopped fresh cilantro leaves

grated Parmeggiano-Reggiano, to sprinkle on top

1. In 12-inch skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion and cook 5 minutes or until lightly browned, stirring frequently. Stir in garlic, curry powder, and cumin, and cook 30 seconds, stirring. Add beans, tomatoes, broth, and carrots; heat to boiling. Reduce heat to medium; cover skillet and cook 5 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, prepare couscous as label directs.

3. Into bean mixture in skillet, stir zucchini and raisins; cover and cook 5 minutes or until zucchini is tender, stirring occasionally.

4. To serve, fluff couscous with two forks. Divide couscous among 4 large shallow bowls. Spoon vegetable stew over couscous; sprinkle with chopped cilantro.

This recipe (which I clipped out of some magazine, I forget which) is very flexible. Instead of zucchini you can use asparagus or green beans. If you have cauliflower, you can break it into florets and add them in at the same time as the carrots. Instead of Parmeggiano-Reggiano, you can use Parmesan or goat cheese. If you don't like cilantro, try regular parsley. Or don't bother if you don't have it in the fridge.

Bon appetit!


  1. I was so excited to see this recipe! I remember the bliss of eating it for the first time when Alana made it at Synergy. Some friends and I will be trying it this evening so I'm keeping my fingers crossed! =)

  2. Finally made it (w/ a few substitutions)! Thanks again for sharing the recipe =D



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