WEST AFRICAN PEANUT STEW

West African Peanut Stew

WEST AFRICAN PEANUT STEW

by | May 15, 2020

West African Peanut Stew is the kind of dish that makes moving to a plant based diet a breeze. This flavorful stew comes with a savory sauce of tomatoes, peanut butter, garlic, ginger, cumin, curry powder, red pepper and cinnamon. You’ll find many versions of the African staple online. It’s a fun dish to experiment with coming up with just the right combination of flavors to suit your palate.

West African Peanut Stew
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West African Peanut Stew

Peanut Stew also known as groundnut stew and maafe is a staple of West African cuisine. This vegan version won't disappoint with its savory sauce combination of tomatoes, peanut butter, garlic, ginger, cumin, curry powder, red pepper and just a pinch of cinnamon.
Prep Time15 minutes
Cook Time35 minutes
Total Time50 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: African
Keyword: Gluten free, No oil, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings: 6 servings
Calories: 368kcal

Ingredients

  • water as needed for water saute, have about 1 cup of water on hand
  • 1 medium onion diced
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 1 tablespoon peeled and minced ginger
  • 1 large sweet potato peeled and diced
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon curry powder
  • ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • pinch cayenne
  • pinch cinnamon
  • 6 ounces tomato paste
  • ½ cup smooth peanut butter
  • 6 cups low salt vegetable broth
  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • 2 (15 ounce) cans chickpeas rinsed and drained
  • salt to taste and pepper

Optional Garnish

  • ¼ cup chopped cilantro
  • cup chopped peanuts

Instructions

  • Heat a large heavy pot on medium high heat. Add 1-2 tablespoons of water. When the water bubbles add the onions and cook until they are soft and translucent. Add additional water as needed to keep the onions from sticking to the pot. When the onions are soft and translucent, add the garlic and ginger and continue stirring until the garlic and ginger are fragrant, about 30 seconds.
  • Add diced sweet potato, cumin, curry powder, red pepper flakes, cayenne and cinnamon, stir and continue to cook for 5 minutes.
  • Add the tomato paste, peanut butter and vegetable broth, stir until combined, cover, bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes until the sweet potatoes are soft.
  • Add the chopped kale and chickpeas and continue to cook for 5 minutes
  • Stir in salt, if using, and pepper.
  • Garnish with cilantro and peanuts, if desired

Notes

Serve over brown rice if desired.

Nutrition

Calories: 368kcal | Carbohydrates: 50g | Protein: 16g | Fat: 14g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Sodium: 496mg | Potassium: 671mg | Fiber: 6g | Sugar: 10g | Vitamin A: 8472IU | Vitamin C: 10mg | Calcium: 47mg | Iron: 2mg

To make this West African Peanut Stew, you’ll need

  • 1 medium onion
  • garlic
  • fresh ginger
  • 1 large sweet potato
  • cumin
  • curry powder
  • red pepper flakes
  • cayenne
  • cinnamon
  • 6 ounces tomato paste
  • ½ cup smooth peanut butter
  • 6 cups low salt vegetable broth
  • 4 cups chopped kale
  • 2 cans or about 3 cups chickpeas
  • cilantro as garnish
  • peanuts as garnish
Ingredients For West African Peanut Stew

West African Peanut Stew In Blue Bowl

Things you might like to know about this recipe…..

Water Sauteing

My preference is to avoid the calories in oils whenever possible. Although some oils are healthier than others, one tablespoon contains about 120 calories. Sauteing with water or broth instead of oil is a great way to save those calories, and in the context of this recipe, the flavor will not be affected.

Heat your pan on high and add about ¼ cup of water. When the water is bubbling, add the ingredient(s) to saute. Stir constantly until the ingredients reach the doneness that your recipe requires. For example, if you are sauteing onions, you will most often want them to be soft and translucent before adding other ingredients. Continue adding a small amount of water as needed to keep the ingredient(s) from sticking to the pan.

Chickpeas

Chickpeas, also known as garbanzo beans, are widely available in grocery stores in cans and dried. You can buy organic and low salt alternatives to many brands of canned chickpeas. The cans are convenient, but when you cook the beans from scratch you save money, you know exactly what’s in your chickpeas, and you can control the consistency of the finished beans to your liking. You’ll find an excellent article here on how to cook chickpeas on the stovetop, in a pressure cooker or in a slow cooker.

There are 10-15 grams of protein in a cup of chickpeas.(Dried, cooked chickpeas will have more protein. In addition they contain calcium, iron, phosphorus, folate and fiber. You’ll find a complete nutritional rundown here.

Vegetable Stock

I prefer to make my vegetable stock from scratch. It’s quick and easy and doesn’t contain unwanted added ingredients such as salt. If you prefer a supermarket brand, I recommend Better Than Bouillon Reduced Sodium Seasoned Vegetable Base. You can measure 1 teaspoon per cup of boiling water and keep the open container in the refrigerator for later use. I prefer the flavor to most canned broths.

Peeling and Grating Ginger

My favorite way to peel ginger is to use the side of a teaspoon to scrape the skin from the root. Use the rounded tip to get into difficult places. Many chefs don’t peel ginger especially if the skin is not particularly tough so don’t worry about leaving a little bit of skin in those difficult spots.

My preference is to grate the ginger with a box grater and then mince it finely with my chef knife. You can also use a microplane for this task and omit the second step of chopping with the chef knife. Many people prefer this method. The reason it’s not my top choice is that I find that the ginger is pulverized almost to a liquid with the microplane.

To freeze ginger, wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. It won’t be crisp, but will be fine for most recipes. Another option for freezing is to mince the ginger, measure it out by teaspoons/tablespoons onto a sheet pan, place the sheet pan in the freezer until each mound of ginger is frozen and then place the mounds in a freezer safe container. You can then retrieve the frozen ginger ready to go when you need it next.

2 Comments

  1. Erika Chin

    This is another rotating treat on our monthly menu! Chock full of a rich variety of hearty veggies and easy on the eyes too. Love the water sautéing tip too.

    Reply
    • Rebecca

      So excited you’re enjoying water sautéing, Erika! For me it’s such an easy way to avoid those extra calories, and then I try to get the necessary fats in my diet in a more enjoyable way such as eating nuts and seeds. Thanks so much for your comment.

      Reply

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