Paula Wolfert’s cookbooks have influenced the finest restaurants and home kitchens alike in this country. The famed culinary anthropologist’s food writing, which goes back four decades, helped introduce readers here to dishes like foie gras, preserved lemons, and truffles. The Moroccan vegetable stew featured here bears Paula’s mark. (Click here to see the recipe.)
“Colorful, aromatic, and sweet, this stew was introduced to the restaurant by Moosewood cook and menu planner Jon Adler after she discovered Paula Wolfert’s book on North African cooking,” notes the cookbook, Moosewood Restaurant Favorites (St. Martin’s Griffin, 2013), which features recipes from the famed Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, N.Y. “That was back in the ‘70s. Paula Wolfert was Joan’s bedtime reading for weeks.” (She’s been bedtime reading for us, too!)
This meatless, aromatic stew is loaded with good-for-you foods: sweet potatoes, tomatoes, eggplant, bell peppers, zucchini, and chickpeas. Currants (or raisins) provide sweetness. A pinch of saffron adds an exotic note. And turmeric, cinnamon, cayenne and paprika provide an added layer of complexity. You could make the aromatic stew using our Everyday Fresh oil. (Click here to see the recipe.)
Moosewood recommends serving the stew on couscous or with toasted pita. They also suggest topping it with toasted almonds or, if you want, wedges of hard-cooked egg. “A sprinkling of finely chopped parsley or scallions also looks pretty,” Moosewood adds.