Finding Comfort: Marrakesh Stew

     Stews are comfy, they're cozy and they're folksy.  My dear friend Lauren, made a wonderful stew last week and told me her first thoughts were: “Gail's not going to like this dish because it has no meat”. But, I have to say, this dish is something else and I’m in love!  The spices give the stew flavorful depth;  the aromas of ground cumin, coriander, cinnamon and allspice work so well together without over powering each other. The potatoes take on the spices nicely while the butternut squash acts as a catalyst. Without further ado, allow us to introduce you to Marrakesh Stew, a one-pot Moroccan stew.

Marrakesh Stew

  • Total time: 1 hour, Servings 8
  • Ingredients
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large red onion, diced large
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1/2 to 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 4  large carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • Course salt and ground pepper
  • 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes
  • 3 3/4 cups low sodium vegetable broth
  • 2 small eggplants, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 can (15.5 ounces) chickpeas, rinsed and drained
  • Cooked couscous (optional) for serving 


1. In an 8 quart Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium -high.  Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until soft, 5 minutes. Add cumin, cinnamon, coriander, cayenne and allspice and cook until fragrant, 1 minute.  Add carrots, potatoes, and squash and season with salt and pepper.  Cook stirring occasionally, until beginning to brown, 5 minutes. Add tomatoes and broth (vegetables should be completely covered by liquid; add water to cover, if necessary. Season with salt and pepper.  Bring to a gentle simmer and cook, uncovered for 20 minutes.

2. Add eggplant, stir to combine and simmer until eggplant is tender, 20 minutes.  Stir in chickpeas, season to taste with salt and pepper, and cook until chickpeas are warmed through, 5 minutes.  Serve stew with couscous if desired.

Cook's Notes

To store, let cool then refrigerate in an airtight container, up to 1 week. Freeze up to 3 months.

     Coco and Cyd are all about comfort, whether it’s in our clothes or from a great book you cannot seem to put down; comfort can come to us in many shapes and forms. Enjoying a warm, hearty soup on a chilly day is a great way to gain energy while staying cozy. Make a large pot of soup to last the whole week (which will make an easy lunch or dinner anytime later) or share with family and friends for a fun night in. We would love to see your finished Marrakesh Stew! Feel free to share pictures or experiences or tell us about something special that gives you comfort during the busy weeks. We hope you enjoy! 

Source: Martha Stewart, EVERYDAY FOOD, January/February 2011. Courtesy of reader Sonya Labbe in Los Angeles


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Quote to take with you for the week:

"There are amazingly wonderful people in all walks of life; some familiar to us and others not. Stretch yourself and really get to know people. People are in many ways one of our greatest treasures."

-Bryant H. McGill



Gail KhanComment