From our kitchen to yours

Anneliese Abney

For the last week of the term, let me return once more to my first love in winter cooking — soups and stews. Moroccan stew always caused a little bit of a scandal in my family — my sister is not a big fan of raisins, which are sort of a featured flavor in this dish. I personally love the hint of sweet amongst all that spicy, tangy goodness of tomatoes and cumin.

This particular version comes out of Nate Grady’s family cookbook and is a little different from the one I grew up with — we added sweet potatoes and kidney beans instead of cannellini and black beans. But that’s the great thing about stews: you can always improvise based on the ingredients at hand! So feel free to play around with your vegetable choices to find your favorite version of this delicious, winter-y, and hearty treat.


What you need:

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tsp ground coriander
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • about 4 cups broth — you know me by now, so you know I make this with Better than Bouillon
  • 1 14.5-oz. can diced tomatoes
  • 1 15-oz. can garbanzo beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 15-oz. can cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 15-oz. can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup golden raisins
  • 10 oz. baby spinach — since it’s still winter here in Wisconsin, go for some frozen spinach!
  • Also, feel free to substitute dry beans for the cans — just remember to soak them the night before!

What to do:

In a large soup pot, heat the oil over medium heat.

Add the onion and cook for a few minutes, stirring often.

Stir in your spices to make a paste, and then add all remaining ingredients except the spinach.

Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes.

Now add the spinach and continue to cook for a few minutes, until the spinach is wilted.

Adjust seasoning to taste.

Serve it up with some fresh-baked bread and voilà! You’ve got a meal.

Serves about eight.

Guten Appetit!