As promised (some time ago – I know), I brought some recipe ideas back from my travels around the Mediterranean this spring. First up is a stew that I think I had every day in Greece, because it is vegan and also because it is super yummy. And super easy to make yourself. I really like artichokes, but I have only eaten them as antipasti or on a pizza. So adding them to a rich stew is new for me. The stew is pretty basic, the main ingredients are artichokes, potatoes, carrots and lemon juice. You add a few other bits and bobs, and you will have a deliciously filling stew that is also great to enjoy in the summer thanks to the tangy lemon flavour.
The various versions of the ones I have eaten in Greece all had dill as their main herb in them. I never associated Greek cooking and dill with each other before that trip. Dill has always been a Scandinavian-Germanic herb to me. So I was very surprised to find it in quite a few dishes. I have cooked this stew with both fresh dill, but also with some dried thyme when I couldn’t find any dill at the shops. It tastes great both times. I also topped it with fresh parsley, another one of the herb staples in Greek cooking.
Here is what you need for 3-4 servings:
4-5 spring onions, chopped (also the green bits)
2 shallots, quartered
2 big carrots, cut into slices of about 5 mm
10-12 salad potatoes, cut into halves (you can also use big potatoes and just cut them into about 20 chunks)
10 artichoke hearts, halved (I have used the canned ones)
juice of 1 juicy lemon (if you’re using an organic lemon, you could add the juiced out lemons into the soup for more lemon aroma; remove before serving)
about 3 cups of water or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon plain flour
3+3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons fresh dill, chopped (or dried)
handful of fresh parsley
salt and pepper to taste
On lower medium heat, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil. Add the spring onions and shallots and let them cook for a few minutes until soft. Add the carrots and potatoes and let them roast for about 2 or 3 minutes. Add the tablespoon of flour (it is you binding agent and makes the stew a bit thicker), and give it another swirl. Add the water/vegetable broth, the lemon juice, the other 3 tablespoons of olive oil and some salt. Turn up the heat and bring to a boil. Then turn down the heat a little again and let it simmer for about 10 minutes until your potatoes and carrots are soft.
Add the artichokes hearts, the dill, and some more salt and pepper to your liking. Let it simmer for another 3 minutes until the artichoke hearts are heated up and the aromas have combined. Turn off the heat, add some freshly chopped parsley, give it another good swirl and taste your stew before serving. If you like it more tangy, add more lemon juice. Serve steaming hot, maybe with some fresh bread like rosemary bread. Enjoy!