For this stew and the Roasted Cherry tomato Sauce I used Sweet Solanato Cherry Tomatoes. They are probably the best cherry tomatoes I have tasted in Australia and are exclusive to Woolworths at the moment. They just became available, so I picked up heaps of these 200 g punnets for only $0.48 each. They are really, really sweet and are addictive to eat fresh. They are a new variety, bred in the Netherlands and are grown hydroponically in Bundaberg, Queensland and Gosford, New South Wales. If you are in Australia and want to find out more about them I have included a nice clip below.
This is a really easy stew to make and full of flavor. I think roasted the tomatoes first really makes the different in the taste. I tried to make use the white parts of the spinach. Initially I sauted them with the onions, carrots and chili, and then pureed them with the tomatoes, so that they wouldn’t be crunch in the stew. I wanted to leave the leaves whole so I added them at the end, but if you have picky eaters you can puree them as well and they will be none the wiser. The red lentils and buckwheat went really well as they are both soft, quick cooking ingredients that are really healthy and have a mild taste.
For the Pumpkin Spelt Loaf I took some inspiration from this Taste recipe, but I changed it a lot so I could utilize my spelt flour. I added the dry ingredients to the pumpkin, rather then the other way around, which made it a lot less bread like, but I got rave reviews at home. So maybe it was a good mistake. It was even better the next day once it had set more in the fridge and we toasted in the sandwich press and served it with butter.
Roasted Cherry Tomato, Red Lentil & Buckwheat Soup (vegan, gluten free, soy free, nut free)
600g cherry tomatoes
8 garlic cloves
2 small red chili
4 leaves of silverbeet (3 stems chopped and 4 of just green leaves)
½ cup red lentils
½ cup buckwheat
3 cups of vegan chicken liquid stock
3. Take a baking tray and add cherry tomatoes, whole garlic cloves and sprinkle with sea salt. Cook for 15-20 mins, so that garlic is soft.
4. In the meantime, dice the onion, carrots, red chili. Separate the white stems and spines of the spinach from the green leaves. Then dice white stems (from 3 of whole leaves, discard one).
6. Once tomatoes & garlic are ready, peel the garlic and place both in to the pot. Then use a bar mix to blend all the vegetables together with the tomatoes to form a sauce (can also be done in a processor.
7. Put the buckwheat to cook in another pot. This should take 20-30 mins according to packet instructions.
9. Lastly, cut the green spinach leaves (from 4 whole spinach leaves) into ribbons. You can do this by scrunch them up and in a cigar shape, then cutting them thinly.
10. Before serving add the spinach leaves and buckwheat and heat through, so the spinach goes limp.
Pumpkin Spelt Loaf (vegan, nut free)
500-600 g butternut pumpkin
1.5 cup wholemeal spelt
½ cup white unbleached flour
1 teaspoon sea salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons fennel seeds
2 eggs worth of egg replacer
5 tablespoons melted butter
½ cup soy milk
1 big sprig of rosemary
1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees.
1. Wash and cut pumpkin into small pieces, remembering to remove the seeds and skin.
2. Place pumpkin in a steamer and cook for 20 mins or until soft.
3. Mash the pumpkin with a fork.
4. Take a large bowl and mix the spelt, white flour, sea salt, baking powder, fennel seeds and 2/3 of the rosemary leaves.
6. Lastly add the pumpkin and mix through.
7. Place the mixture in a loaf tin and top with the remaining rosemary leaves.
8. Place in the oven and bake for 60 mins.
Fresh Food Update – Sweet Solanato, http://cooking-recipes4u.blogspot.com.au/2012/11/fresh-food-update-sweet-solanato.html
AU: Spring into Sweet Solanato tomatoes, www.freshplaza.com/news_detail.asp?id=102489