Waste not want not this Halloween and turn your carved pumpkin into a delicious Moroccan stew. Fragrant spices have multiple health benefits and this North African influenced dish is a great way to introduce a sweetness that negates the craving for dessert. You can easily purchase a rasel hanout spice blend or make your own, as below, to coat the protein- and mineral-rich amaranth and chickpeas.
150 g/5 oz. mixed salad leaves
2 tablespoons coconut or olive oil
1 red onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, chopped
4 teaspoons rasel hanout
225 g/1cup amaranth
200 g/1 1/2 cups dried chickpeas, soaked overnight in cold water
1 large sweet potato, cubed
1 pumpkin – you will need 735g/1lb. 10 oz. cubed flesh
1 /4 teaspoon sea salt
65 g/1 /2 cup raisins
90 g/1 cup toasted slivered/flaked almonds
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
sprigs of cilantro/coriander, to garnish (optional)
a sterilized glass jar with an airtight lid (optional)
Gently heat the oil in a large pan, add the onion, garlic, and spice and sweat over low heat for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, put the amaranth into a pan with 2 cups/500 ml of water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. Take off the heat and allow any remaining water to be absorbed (I like it a bit crunchy and couscous like in texture, hence cooking for a shorter time than some may suggest).
Drain the chickpeas and add with the chopped sweet potato and pumpkin to the pan containing the onions. Add 3 cups/750 ml of water, cover, and simmer for 15 minutes. Stir thoroughly, then add the salt and raisins and simmer for a further 5 minutes.
Season the amaranth to taste and stir in three-quarters of the almonds. Serve with the pumpkin stew, garnished with the remaining almonds and sprigs of cilantro/coriander.
Note: To make your own ras el hanout spice mix, in a dry pan toast 3 tablespoons cumin seeds, 21 /2 tablespoons coriander seeds, 1 1/2 tablespoons ground cinnamon, 2 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger, 2 teaspoons black peppercorns, 1 1/2 teaspoons ground turmeric, 1 teaspoon paprika, 1/2 teaspoon cardamom seeds, 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg, 1 /4 teaspoon cloves, and a pinch of saffron threads for a few minutes until fragrant. Grind in a spice grinder or clean coffee grinder with a few dried rose petals. Store any leftover spice mixture in an airtight jar.
For more delicious winter recipes, check out Bowl Food.