More difficult doesn’t always mean tastier, and complicated doesn’t always mean more delicious.
Take this very easy, one-pot stew for example. I made it for dinner on a night when we were scraping the bottom of the veggie drawer before grocery day, trying to decide whether we had enough ingredients to pull off a meal, or if we needed to order takeout.
Here’s what I had on hand: A leek, a couple of carrots, some stalks of celery, some garlic, a box of white beans, 4 cups of stock and some kale. I sautéed all of the veggies in a stock pot, added beans and stock and let it simmer down to a nice, chunky stew – and guess what? It was my family’s favorite meal of the week. Note to self to go with instinct more often!
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- Large stock pot
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 1 leek, sliced, soaked in water to remove grit, dried and chopped
- 2 garlic cloves
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 carrots, peeled and sliced into thin rounds
- 2 celery stalks, sliced thin
- 1/2 cup dino kale (or whatever kale you have on hand), de-stemmed and chopped
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1/2 tsp dried red pepper flakes
- 1 15-ounce can or box of white beans, with soaking liquid
- 4 cups stock (I used chicken stock, but you can use vegetable stock to make this a vegan meal)
- Place the olive oil in a large stock pot and turn the heat to medium.
- Add the leek and garlic, season with salt and pepper, and allow to cook until leeks are soft and garlic is fragrant, about 3 minutes.
- Add carrots, celery and kale, stir to combine, then add dried thyme and red pepper flakes, and allow to cook for about another 7 minutes or until carrots are softening up.
- Add the white beans with their soaking liquid and stir to combine, then add stock.
- Bring to a boil, then lower heat to a vigorous simmer and allow to cook and reduce with the lid off for about 25 minutes.
- Taste and season with more salt and pepper if desired; ladle into bowls and serve hot.