In winter, the body simply craves comfort: sweaters and blankets, fuzzy slippers, a crackling fireplace, and a bowl of hot, delicious stew to warm the tummy.
My Chickpea and Kale Stew, simmered with Indian spices, does more than warm the tummy though. It delights your tastebuds with the eclectic flavors of toothy kale, succulent sweet potato, vibrant garlic, and tangy lime. And then it goes and turns your body into a lean, mean, fat-burning machine. How’s that for perfection?
I used my pressure cooker to give me a head-start on this recipe on a busy weeknight. All I did was cook the kale and the chickpeas together until both were tender and perfect. To add to the convenience I used frozen kale, although fresh kale would also work great here. And by all means, use canned chickpeas if you want to.
I’ve been sharing Valentine’s Day recipes on this blog for the last few days and there is more to come, but I wanted to take a little break with this everyday comfort food. If you live in the northeast, I hope you are taking all the precautions you can against the nasty blizzard heading your way.
A lovely weekend to all!
Chickpea and Kale Stew with Indian Spices
1 cup dry chickpeas
1 16-oz package of chopped kale
2 large sweet potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 large onion, thinly sliced
1 tbsp grated ginger
5 cloves of garlic, minced
1/2 tsp turmeric
1 heaping tbsp sambar powder
2 dry red chillies (optional)
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tbsp coriander powder
1/2 cup canned coconut milk
1 tsp canola or other vegetable oil
Juice of 1 lemon
Pressure-cook the chickpeas and kale together until tender. If you don’t have a pressure cooker, soak the chickpeas overnight and then place them in a pot with the kale (use fresh kale if you don’t want to use the frozen). Cover with water and cook about 45 minutes to an hour or until the chickpeas are tender.
Heat the oil in a separate pot and add the cumin seeds.
When they sputter, add the onions and red chillies and saute until they start to brown, about 3-4 minutes.
Add the ginger and garlic and saute for a few more seconds.
Add the sambar powder, turmeric, and coriander powder. Mix well and then add the sweet potatoes.
Saute the sweet potatoes for five minutes or until they start to soften. Now add the chickpeas and kale and any stock from cooking the chickpeas, and bring to a boil. If the mixture is too dry, add water.
Cover the pot and cook for another 10 minutes or until the sweet potatoes are really tender.
Add the coconut milk and lemon juice. Stir well and turn off before the stew comes to a boil.
Serve hot over some rice or bulgur or couscous.