Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto

Posted in EntreesSides

On Veganuary

I was on the tube in mid-December and I saw an advert about Veganuary. I won’t lie, but the thought of a vegan-month frightens me. I have entirely too much dairy in a day from milk in my coffee and cereal to yoghurt and fruit for a quick afternoon pick-me-up. I’m not going to argue that dairy is good for you (blah blah blah), but I am fine with my intake. On with that, I am quite the carnivore, but when I’m cooking at home for myself, I tend to make mostly vegetarian…

Fast forward to a week from that train ride and I was speaking to a friend over the DMs of Instagram well into the night. The conversation steered towards dry-January (no alcohol) and I mentioned my little thought-meanderings of veganuary and wanted her opinion. It peaked her interest, naturally, and so we discussed the various constraints we may have to overcome—also exchanged and discussed recipes. So an aubergine stew recipe that is too easy to not try!

Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto
Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto
Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto

no willpower

Funny enough it seemed that it wouldn’t be too hard, minus the hankerings for chicken nuggets or ice cream. It was doable. Before I excite you any further, I actually decided not to participate in Veganuary just because I have very limited willpower when it comes to consuming anything. I did, however, convince my friend to take part and tell me about her experience… you never know, maybe it will inspire me to take a month to do just that.

And as we discussed the many recipes and adaptations of favorite foods, I conceptualized a little recipe that peaked those {lack-of-willpower} tastebuds and started off ‘veganury’ strong.

Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto
Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto

Spiced with North African flavors that brings on woody and earthy hints alongside floral and sweet tints embedded within the couscous. Alongside a fiery hit of the green beans tossed in chili pesto. It’s a medley of flavors and surprisingly makes the cut for veganuary too!

Serves 2

Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto

Recipe
ingredients
  • 1 aubergine, cut in 3/4” cubes
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 4-5 black peppercorn
  • 3 tbs ras al-hanout
  • 2 cups tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cup vegetable stock
  • 1 cup chickpeas, ready to cook
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tbs honey
  • 200g uncooked couscous
  • 1 tbs dried rosemary
  • 2 tbs sultanas
  • 200g green beans
  • 2 tbs chili pesto, recipe found here!
  • fresh parsley & spring onions

method

Turn on the kettle to boil water. Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat, add the onions, garlic and black peppercorn. Saute until fragrat, about 5 minutes, then add the aubergine and ras al-hanout. Stir occassionally for 7 minutes until the aubergine is sightly charred and coated with the spices. Add the tomatoes and saute for an additional 7 minutes. Stir in the vegetable stock, bring to a boil and cover whilst it simmers.

In the meantime, take out two large boils and divide up the couscous, rosemarry and sultanas equally in both bowls. Pour enough on to cover the couscous and have 1/4 inch (5 mm) of liquid on it beyond that. Cover with a side dish or lid.

Now stir in the chickpeas into the stew, add salt to season and honey. Remove lid and turn the flame to low, so the stock reduces by half. About 15 minutes.

In a separate bowl, add the rest of hte boiling water to the green beans and set aside for about 10 minutes.

Remove the lids frm the couscous and fluff with a fork. Also remove the water from the green beans, add the chili pesto and parsley and gently toss so all the green beans are coated.

Add the stew on top of hte couscous and serve alongside the green beans.

Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto
Aubergine Stew with Rosemary Couscous & Green Beans in Chili Pesto