I love pottering in the kitchen and making complicated dishes. That said, sometimes you just need simple, nourishing and delicious meals like this Eggplant and Chickpea Stew. Like many people, weeknights are often where I really struggle to know what to make. Usually I’ll come in from work tired and hungry and with nothing useful in the fridge. For me, batch cooking a couple of meals per week has made a huge difference to my stress levels. I try to plan what I’m going to make ahead of time and shop for it when I do my regular grocery run. The best thing about simple batch cooking is that not only do you have a nourishing dinner prepared, but you also have several portions leftover for lunches during the week. That’s another few meals you don’t have to make!
This Eggplant and Chickpea Stew requires minimal preparation beyond chopping veggies, opening tins and draining chickpeas. Therefore it’s an easy one to make after coming in from your day. I love that you can add all the ingredients to the pan, bring the mixture to a simmer and walk away. You can then leave it for 15-20 minutes while you do something else. Any leftovers are good for about 3 days if refrigerated in an airtight container.
Easy Eggplant and Chickpea Stew (vegan & gluten-free)
- 1 medium eggplant/aubergine
- 1 medium zucchini/courgette
- 1 796ml tin crushed tomatoes (just over 3 cups)
- 3 cups chickpeas, soaked and cooked (or drained if from a tin)
- 4 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 vegetable stock cube dissolved in ½ cup boiling water
- 1 tbsp dried mixed herbs
- ½ cup unsweetened coconut or non-dairy yoghurt (optional)
- 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped
- Salt and pepper, to taste
To serve - optional
- Brown rice/millet/quinoa
- Sliced green (spring) onions
- Lightly sautéed purple cauliflower
- Chop the eggplant and zucchini into 1½cm cubes.
- Place them in a large soup or stew pot along with the crushed tomatoes, chickpeas, garlic, stock and dried herbs.
- On the stovetop bring the stew to a boil then reduce the heat to a simmer.
- Cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the eggplant and zucchini are tender.
- Stir in the coconut yoghurt and add the spinach.
- Cook for another 3-5 minutes, until the spinach has wilted.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper and remove from the heat.
- Serve with brown rice, millet or quinoa. I also like to top the stew with chopped green onions, and if it’s in season add a small side serving of lightly sautéed purple (or regular) cauliflower as it tastes delicious and adds a pop of colour!