A steaming bowl of soup is my favorite meal in cold weather, but it doesn’t travel well. I was inspired to make this stew when I was making soup and thinking about how difficult it would be to bring to work for lunch. Adding some whole-wheat couscous took care of the liquid but preserved the flavor, and the dish turned out to be just as filling and warming as a soup.
This is a simple recipe that could be changed in so many ways. The ratio of broth, vegetables, and couscous is important so you end up with the right consistency of stew, but you can throw in any vegetables you have on hand. Different spice and herb combinations would work, too, but I recommend using the goat cheese every time to add a bit of creaminess.
- 1 tsp olive oil
- 2 carrots
- 1 red pepper
- 1 sweet potato
- 1/2 cup green lentils, rinsed and drained
- 32 oz low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 1/2 tsp onion powder
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1 tsp thyme
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 3/4 cup whole-wheat couscous
- 1 oz goat cheese
- 2 cups packed baby spinach
- 1 tsp rice vinegar
- handful of fresh parsley, chopped
- grated parmesan cheese
- Heat the olive oil over medium in a large soup pot. Chop carrots, red pepper, and sweet potato (with skin on) and saute in olive oil for 5 minutes.
- Add the lentils, broth, bay leaf, onion powder, oregano, and thyme to the pot. Bring to a boil and then drop heat to a simmer for 30 minutes. Stir occasionally.
- Remove the bay leaf, and add the salt, couscous, and goat cheese. Stir, drop the heat to low, and cover the pot. Allow to sit for 5 minutes, until the liquid is all absorbed. Stir to incorporate the goat cheese.
- Turn off the heat and stir in the spinach and vinegar until spinach wilts.
- Serve topped with parsley and parmesan cheese.
Serves 4 to 6. Active time 20 minutes; total time 50 minutes.
This is the fastest, easiest dinner I’ve made in a long time—and it includes a homemade sauce! In less than 30 minutes, this vegetable-filled pasta dish comes together with a thick, pesto-like sauce. Add chicken sausage if you’re in the mood for meat, but this meal is plenty filling on its own.
The romesco sauce, which is made mostly of artichokes, was one of my early recipes for The Low-Acid Kitchen. I was happy to find that it’s still as tasty as when I first created the recipe. It doesn’t have the tangy bite of traditional tomato- and vinegar-filled pasta sauces, but it ties together a satisfying meal.
- 8 oz sliced baby bella mushrooms
- 7 oz high-fiber pasta
- ingredients for a double batch of romesco sauce
- sea salt
- 6 oz mixed baby spinach and arugula
- handful of parsley leaves
- parmesan cheese
- Heat a large nonstick pan over medium heat, and set a medium pot of water over high heat to boil.
- Add the mushrooms to the pan, cover it, and cook for 8 minutes or until browned. Stir occasionally.
- When the water boils, add the pasta and cook according to package directions.
- Meanwhile, use a mini-chop or food processor to make the sauce.
- When mushrooms are browned, add salt to taste. Then drop the heat to low. Add the sauce and the greens to the mushroom pan, and add the lid to heat through while the pasta finishes cooking.
- Add the drained pasta and stir. Sprinkle with parsley and parmesan cheese before serving.
Serves 4. Active and total time 25 minutes.
At-home cooking classes are great! Cook & Party brings ingredients, dishes, and wine to your NYC apartment and helps you make delicious Italian food. I wouldn’t have thought to make gnocchi at home, but it was easy to do. If you’re willing to clean up the flour later, this makes for a really fun evening.
These gnocchi have ricotta cheese instead of potato—which Chef Chiara said actually makes them lighter. Although cheese is high in fat, a small portion of these gnocchi won’t irritate heartburn. The difficult part is deciding how to serve them. We made a Sicilian sauce with tomato, eggplant, and basil.
The tomatoes (along with all of the wine I drank) made this a very bad night for GERD. I should have set aside some of the sauteed eggplant before the tomatoes were added. The gnocchi would be delicious lightly dressed with eggplant, a little olive oil, and fresh basil. Chiara also suggested the combination of olive oil and sage.
I’m going to experiment with this recipe to see if I can make the gnocchi more reflux-friendly. Adding some whole-wheat flour and reducing the cheese are on my to-do list. But even as is, these are a great option for impressing dinner guests, as long as you choose an appropriate sauce.
- 1/2 lb ricotta cheese
- 2 eggs
- 1 1/4 cups flour, plus more for kneading
- 1/2 cup parmesan cheese
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1/2 tsp salt
- Mix all ingredients in a large bowl and knead until a dough forms. If it’s very sticky, add a bit more flour.
- Flour the surface of a clean counter and knead the dough until completely smooth. Roll it into logs about 1 inch thick, and use a floured knife to cut them into 3/4-inch pieces of gnocchi. Arrange them on a floured baking sheet as you go.
- Boil a large pot of water and add a pinch of salt. Add the gnocchi in batches and cook briefly (2 to 3 minutes), just until they float to the surface. Drain and serve with your favorite sauce.
Serves 6. Recipe courtesy Cook & Party.