Sunday, August 8, 2010

Perfect Weekend Dinner

Let's be honest, we've all done it: At the end of a long work-week, you head to your favorite restaurant on Friday night with the company of your choice, chow down (perhaps drink down?), and revel in your full-bellied, non-working self for the rest of the evening.

I couldn't lie if I tried: my Friday night chow-down made my week :) We were fortunate enough to celebrate a friend's birthday at one of my favorite Morgantown restaurants, Black Bear, and I may or may not have polished it off with a Blueberry-Golden Oreo Blizzard at Dairy Queen (I need to meet the genius who suggested using Golden Oreos at Dairy Queen. Whoever she/he is, they made my summer).

As much as I loved my full-bellied self Friday night, I knew I needed a delicious and healthy dinner to kick off my Saturday evening... and that, my friends, brings us to today's recipe.

I urge you to try this dinner this week, and I promise you'll go to bed feeling good. We picked it out in the Vegan Planet cookbook (amazing!), and paired it with a tossed salad with romaine, fresh broccoli, grated parmesan, and sun-dried tomato dressing.

Be creative with the spices--feel free to increase amounts to your taste (we decided we would add curry powder next time and possibly more turmeric).

Now get over your full-bellied Friday feeling, and start your week off RIGHT! Our dinner last night is your dinner tonight:

Chickpea & Green Bean Tagine
(From the Vegan Planet Cookbook)
As with many stews, this recipe tastes even better the next day, after the flavors have had time soak in.

  • 1 1/2 cup chopped, dried apricot
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 8 oz. fresh green beans, cut into 1" segments
  • 1 can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 1/2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) chickpeas
  • 2 TBSP chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/4 - 1/2 cup toasted, slivered almonds
  • salt and pepper to taste


1) Fill a medium sized pot with approximately 3 - 4 cups of water and bring to a boil. Once boiling, remove water from heat, place dried fruit in the water, cover the pot, and allow to sit for 20 minutes.

2) In a large pot, saute onion with a little olive oil until soft, about 3 - 5 minutes. Add garlic, cinnamon, turmeric, and allspice, and saute for a few more minutes.

3) Add green beans, can of tomatoes, stock (chicken or vegetable), brown sugar, salt, and pepper. Simmer until beans are tender (10 - 15 minutes).

4) Drain water from the apricots in a collander. Add apricots and chickpeas to the green bean mixture. Simmer for 10 more minutes.

5) Stir in almonds, parsley, and lemon zest.

6) Yum-O!

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