The weather in South Africa is ridiculous at the moment. Boiling hot one moment, bursting with swooshy winds and rain the next. With such inconsistency it is better to err on the side of caution and stock up on hold and cold foods to ensure happiness all round. On the toasty front I decided to finally make some dumplings, since I recall Man-thing asking about them a while back, and it’s always a good excuse to make a stew. 😀 Are you cold, miserable, hungry? Well, if you have an hour to spare, including half an hour of lounging about, bust out your pantry ingredients and go wild!What I love best about dumpling stews (or stews in general) is that you can really not go wrong. Bash stuff together in a pot with water, perhaps a roux, and voila. One often has odds and ends lying around in the fridge that are about to meet their doom, and a stew or soup manages to save them and put them to use. War-time measures for the poor, or at least that’s the mentality I’m trying to switch over to in prep for a hard year ahead. It’s not the end of the world, since it will essentially boil down to first world problems, but still, I think a bit of thrift never should never hurt the tastebuds.
Ingredients – serves 5 – 6:
- 2 cups cooked brown lentils
- 2 cans chopped tomatoes
- 5 cups diced baby marrows
- 1 cup water
- 1/3 cup pitted black olives, measured then diced
- 3 TBSP dry parsley
- 3 tsp onion powder
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 3 tsp coriander
- 2 TBSP chickpea flour
Dumplings (makes 6 medium dumplings – double for more):
- 1 1/4 cup ww flour*
- 3/4 cup water
- 2 TBSP oil of choice (I used avocado oil)
- 2 TBSP dry parsley
- 2 tsp baking powder
- 2 tsp mustard
- big pinch salt
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- soy milk or aquafaba to brush
- Bring your stew ingredients (except lentils) to a boil for 10 minutes, then simmer for another 10 whilst you prep.
- Preheat oven to 180C and spray a high-rimmed loaf pan.
- In a bowl add your dry dumpling ingredients. Stir in y our wet ingredients until combined. Pat your hands with some flour and form 6 (or more) dumpling balls.
- Remove 1 cup of stew (try not to get veggie bits in there – aim for the broth/tomatoes) and whisk with the chickpea flour until combined.
- Pour back into the stew and stir, letting it thicken for another 5 minutes.
- Decant your stew into the loaf pan until it is 1/2 – 3/4 full, reserving the rest.
- Add your dumplings, evenly spaced, in rows along the loaf pan.
- Brush your dumplings with soy milk or aquafaba.
- Bake 25 – 30 minutes until the dumplings are slightly golden.
- Serve with the rest of the stew beneath, or add more water to the stew left in the pot to make a soup for the next day and enjoy your loaf-pan portions with some salad.
* I haven’t tried this with GF, but perhaps all purpose GF blend with 3 TBSP aquafaba to help bind.As mentioned, you can increase the number of dumplings and thus the number of loaf pans you shove into the oven, but I like to keep dumplings as a treat, and using the leftover stew either as is with rice or potatoes the next day, or else as a soup (as we did) works magic. The chickpea roux really helps add a lush thickness to the stew which makes it ideal for even adding to a snackwich or on a roll as a type of sloppy joe. Nom nom!
It’s almost Friday!