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Sweet Vegetarian Stew

Adapted from Olive Trees and Honey: A Treasury of Vegetarian Recipes from Jewish Communities Around the World by Gil Marks
vegetarian stew
Gil Marks calls this “Moroccan Vegetable Stew for Couscous.” I used white beans and brown rice, and I left out the cabbage. I also changed the amounts and cooked it all in a crockpot. Still delicious!


  • 6 cups vegetable stock (I used water – I’m not one to make stock for a stew)
  • 12-16 baby carrots (or 6 big carrots, cut up)
  • 1 large onion, sauteed (the original recipe says 3 onions and doesn’t say sautee)
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1 stick of cinnamon (original recipe said 3)
  • 1 Tbsp. turmeric (the original recipe said only 1/2 teaspoon)
  • 2 large sweet potatoes, peeled and cut up into pieces (or use butternut squash)
  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley or cilantro
  • 2 turnips, peeled and quartered (they look like potatoes in the finished dish)
  • 3 zucchini, cut into chunks
  • 2 cups cooked beans (original recipe said chickpeas – I used white Northern beans)

If you use dried beans, soak the beans overnight the night before you prepare the recipe. If you use a can of beans, add the can towards the end of the recipe. Cook the beans in your crockpot for a few hours until soft. Add carrots, sauteed onions, sweet potatoes and turnips and cook for another hour in the crockpot. Add spices, the zucchini and cooked beans (if you used canned beans – if you started with dried beans, they should already be in their cooking). Cook until zucchini is tender, about twenty minutes. Sprinkle the parsley on top at the end.

The original recipe says serve on couscous, but I served it on brown rice. Drizzle the liquid on top like it’s gravy.

Gil Marks suggests this stew as a dish to serve on Rosh Hashana (yes, the Jewish New Year is the next holiday on the Jewish calendar, unless you count Tu B’Av). I think of it as a summer stew, because you can get delightful fresh garden vegetables to include in the stew at this time of year.

Batya says

I hope you sent it to KCC

Maybe it's the timing, b ut wouldln't it be good pre or post fast?

Leora says

I did eat it pre-fast. Whatever works for you! I originally planned to make it for Thursday night supper but ran out of time, so it became a side dish for Friday night.

Robin from Israel says

Sounds delicious. I never remember to put turmeric in mine. Or turnips for that matter. I do throw in a hunk of orange squash or pumpkin though.

My photography is available for purchase - visit Around the Island Photography and bring home something beautiful today!

Leora says

I found the turnips a good substitute for potatoes, if you are trying to eat less potatoes (lighter, lower glycemic index - I think).

Turmeric is the new health food - good against all sorts of ailments (arthritis, for example). What a fun health food.

Ilana-Davita says

Two questions (my comments wouldn't be my comments without a question or two):
- You write "Cook the beans in your crockpot for a few hours until soft. Add carrots, sauteed onions..." but then you add the beans towards the end, which makes me wonder when I am supposed to add the beans.
- How do you like this cookbook? I'd like to purchase a new cookbook with vegetarian recipes and can't decide between this one, The New Moosewood Cookbook and A Fistful of Lentils.

I quite like couscous and would probably serve this with it. I often add raisins to the grains when cooking it as it adds sweetness so this might be a good idea for Rosh Hashanah. Here in Moroccan restaurants, they serve the chickpeas and the raisins in two different serving bowls and everyone adds whatever they fancy.

Leora says

OK, I need to clarify the text. If you have soaked the beans and they are not cooked, you need to cook them first.

If you use canned beans, yes, you add them toward the end.

I would purchase A Fistful of Lentils. I learned how to make meatballs from her and how to make phyllo stuffed triangles. Moosewood is a classic - so get that one later!

I haven't used this cookbook much. I opened it up and found this recipe.

Ilana-Davita says

Thanks for the useful feedback.

Hannah @Cooking Manager says

You could skip sauteeing the onions if you cook them longer in the crockpot, say with the beans. Although a lot of people like the flavor of the browned onions. I posted this on the CM Facebook page.

Leora says

The original recipe didn't have the sauteeing. I like sauteed onions, so I added it.

Yael says

One word-Quinoa?
I love the recipe. I am copying it!

Leora says

Yes, I bet it would taste good with quinoa. Hmmm, does this mean Ashkenazim can eat on Pesach? Oh, no, it has beans. Never mind. Sigh.

EG Wow says

It sounds delicious!

Jew Wishes says

What a juicy looking photograph, and a wonderful recipe!

Batya says

You're in the me-ander: The Pre-Holiday Kosher Cooking Carnival. Visit and spread the word! Chodesh Tov. If you'd like to host one, please let me know. Thanks


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