Summer Garden Stew

img_9780This dinner came about after one of those weekends when we were too busy enjoying ourselves to get to the shops and thus ended up with something of a Monday night fridge famine of old veg and older halloumi cheese.

I will do pretty much anything to avoid a supermarket trip after work, so with some store cupboard help and determination we ended up with a fine dinner of roasted marrow and a really tasty tomato stew topped with too much grilled halloumi. If I was a better gardener, I would have been able to make this from my own plot produce at this time of year so that’s something to aim for in 20119. As it stands, only some of the tomatoes and basil came from my little patch of Essex agriculture.

I can’t really get away with calling this a quick dinner but it is simple and worked well for a meat free Monday, unintentional at this was! If you drop the halloumi topping it is vegan friendly.

Boomboom Summer Garden Stew


Serves 3

1kg fresh whole tomatoes, chopped
1 aubergine, diced
8 cloves garlic
1/4tsp chilli flakes or 1/2 tsp good hot sauce
5 button mushrooms, thinly sliced
Good handful fresh basil
4 tbsps red quinoa (dry)
1tsp sugar
1 tbsps cider vinegar
Oil for frying

Halloumi cheese and a green salad to serve (optional).

Start with some rapeseed or olive oil in a hot pan and add the diced aubergine. When this starts to soften add your chopped or crushed garlic (yes, you did read right you want 8 cloves) and cook for another 2 minutes. Add a little water if the aubergine absorbs all the oil and starts to stick in the pan.
Add your tomatoes now- any sort will work- and mushroom and fry off for another 3-5 minutes. Add your chilli flakes or hot sauce, cover and simmer lowly for 30 minutes.

Now add the sugar, vinegar and stir well. Taste now and season with salt and pepper as to your taste. Add the quinoa and bring to a good simmer now until the quinoa cooks through (15-20 minutes).

Dry heat a good non stick frying pan to fry your halloumi slices until just starting to turn golden.

When the cheese is done, shred the basil leaves and stir into the veg then serve immediately, topped with the halloumi if using.


Variations- most summer veg will work here you can add peppers, courgettes etc. Serve over rice or couscous if you don’t have/like quinoa. 


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