Moroccan Chickpea Stew

Moroccan Chickpea Vegan Stew

It's TV Tuesday and I have a recipe I discovered on the food network. This recipe is loaded with goodness. Chickpeas, tomatoes, spinach, garlic, onion, spices . . . It's a nutritional powerhouse. There's not much prep work and not much hands-on time. It's no wonder that it has a 5 star rating with over 150 reviews on the food network website. I knew the first time I made it that this recipe was a keeper. It bridges the divide between east and west because it has some of the spices of the east, but also familiar ingredients to westerners.

I might be partial to soups and stews, but I can't help it. I think it's in my DNA. When I was growing up, we ate a lot of soups and stews. I would say they were our favorite meals. My dad's brother and sister used to laugh about the fact that my dad loved eating soup for breakfast! I didn't realize that this was abnormal. I remember my dad's sister asking if my dad still ate soup for breakfast and laughing when the answer was yes. I made a mental note of that. Huh, this is somehow amusing. Maybe people don't normally have soup for breakfast?

My mom told me just recently that when she was younger, she also wanted to eat soup all the time and was sometimes teased for this. She said that when she met my dad, they knew that it was meant to be because the two ridiculed soup-lovers finally found someone share their passion for soup with. Okay, they weren't really ridiculed - more like lovingly teased from time to time.

I remember being home on weekends and smelling the savory aroma of a fresh, homemade soup or stew cooking on the stove. I can still smell the tomatoes, the vegetables, noodles, beans . . . Both of my parents were great cooks, but I looked forward to the weekends when my dad cooked. I don't know why but it seemed special to have something made by my dad.

I was honestly a little skeptical about the cinnamon in this stew, but I tried it without and it's just not the same. It's also not nearly as good without the spinach either. When I tasted this before and after the spinach, there was a huge difference.

This is a really great meal to warm you up on a chilly day, but I could enjoy it any time of the year.