Whenever I’m looking for new allergen-friendly recipes, I like to search for vegan cookbooks. The recipes are guaranteed to be dairy and egg-free, and many of them will be gluten-free. It gets me a good bit of the way to a doable dish, and the rest I can usually adapt. It’s also an easy thing to add meat back in, if we’re feeling carnivorous.

This is from one of my favorite vegan authors, Isa Chandra Moskowitz. Her recipes are tasty and delicious and uncomplicated.

This dish is in constant rotation in our house. I can almost always pull it together (or a close-enough approximation) from what’s in my pantry. You can substitute other veggies (Green beans are good. So is cauliflower, or zucchini.) If we’re feeling like we need the extra protein, I top the bowls with half of a hard-boiled egg.

I typically use crushed or stewed tomatoes, instead of chopping up whole ones. It just shaves a bit off of the prep-time. Likewise, you could replace the fresh spinach with frozen, chopped spinach, but it really does taste better with fresh spinach.

I’ve made this in the crock pot a few times when my schedule needed me to. It was fine, but I do prefer the flavor from the stove top. The spices are more pronounced and it’s much more flavorful.

The asafoetida powder is optional here because you probably can’t find it at your corner grocer. You’ll find it at your local ethnic market though, and it’ll boost the flavor and authenticity of the dish. It also goes by the name Hing Powder.

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Chickpea and Spinach Curry

Source: Vegan with a Vengeance, by Isa Chandra Moskowitz

Ingredients

  • 12 ozs can whole tomatoes in juice
  • 3 tbsps oil
  • 2 tsps black mustard seeds
  • organic oniondiced
  • 4 cloves garlicminced
  • 2 tbsps fresh gingerminced
  • 3 tsps curry powder
  • 2 tsps ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • ¼ tsp ground cloves
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp asafoetida(optional)
  • cardamom pods
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 10 cups fresh organic spinachrinsed and chopped
  • 4 cups chickpeascooked and drained

Method

  1. prepare the tomatoes by removing them from the can, squeezing out the juice, and tearing them into bite size pieces. Place the prepared tomatoes in a bowl and reserve the juice in the can.
  2. Preheat a medium saucepan over moderate heat; pour in the oil and then the mustard seeds. Let the seeds pop for about a minute, then add the onion; turn up the heat to medium-high and saute for 7-10 minutes, until the onion begins to brown. Add garlic and ginger and saute 2 more minutes. Add spices, salt and 1/4 cup of the reserved tomato juic; saute one minute more. Add tomatoes and heat through. Add handfuls of spinach, mixing each addition until wilted. When all the spinach has completely wilted and the mixture is liquid-y, add the chickpeas. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for 10 more minutes, stirring occasionally. Taste, and adjust the spices if necessary. Simmer uncovered for about 10 more minutes, or until a thick, stewlike consistency is achieved.

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