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Head to the salad bar: That's where many of this vegetarian stew's ingredients are waiting for you, practically ready to go. Bonus: Make the full batch and store some as a Make It, Freeze It, Take It option (see related recipes in Wednesday's Food section).

The recipe's from "Gourmet Today," a new cookbook edited by Ruth Reichl.

Italian Vegetable Stew
6 to 8 servings

1/3 cup olive oil

2 medium carrots

4 medium cloves garlic

1 3/4 cups sliced red bell pepper (from the salad bar)

2 1/2 to 3 cups sliced red or white onions (from the salad bar)

1/4 cup sliced celery (from the salad bar)

8 ounces green beans (can use prepped microwavable green beans)


2 medium potatoes, preferably California Gold or Yukon Gold (do not use red bliss or waxy potatoes)

2 small eggplants (1 pound total)

28 ounces canned whole tomatoes

14 to 16 ounces sliced zucchini (from the salad bar)

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Leaves from a few sprigs of marjoram or thyme (optional)

Questions? We're here to help.

-- Bonnie Benwick

By The Food Section  |  October 13, 2009; 2:00 PM ET
Categories:  Shopping  | Tags: Bonnie Benwick, Dinner in Minutes  
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Any suggestions for substitutes for someone (me) who is allergic to eggplant? I love the idea of a vegetarian stew. I'm assuming that a winter squash wouldn't work--how about more zucchini, yellow squash, or even some corn?

Posted by: NoMad3 | October 13, 2009 3:33 PM | Report abuse

You could cut up and parboil a medium turnip or 2 peeled parsnips while the stew is cooking, then add them in the last 15 minutes. Or just add a bit more of the other elements you like won't miss the eggplant.

Posted by: benwickb | October 13, 2009 7:30 PM | Report abuse

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