Eggplant stew, called kawaj in Syrian, is simply chunks of eggplants, potatoes, and tomatoes stewed to tender submission. It’s a comforting vegan and vegetarian dish for cold weather.
Popular in Syria, this hearty vegetarian stew laden with eggplant, potatoes, and tomatoes is simple to make and comforting as heck. And it contains a lovely trick of layering the vegetables and leaving them alone during cooking. Seriously, resist the temptation to stir. You’ll thank yourself later.–Angie Zoobkoff
Eggplant Stew | Kawaj
- Quick Glance
- 15 M
- 45 M
- Serves 6
- 1/2 cup mild vegetable oil
- 1 small onion, coarsely grated
- 2 1/2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks
- 2 large globe eggplants (about 2 pounds), cut into 1 1⁄2-inch (4 cm) chunks
- 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 3 teaspoons salt
- 1/2 cup coarsely chopped parsley, leaves and tender stems (a little less than 1/2 small bunch)
- 3 medium tomatoes (about 1 1/2 pounds), peeled and coarsely chopped
- Parsley leaves, for garnish (optional)
- 1. In a large pot set over medium-high heat, warm the oil. Add the onion and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the potatoes, followed by the eggplant. Do not stir. Sprinkle with the paprika, pepper, 2 teaspoons salt, and then the chopped parsley. Do not stir. Cover and cook for 5 minutes.
- 2. Place the tomatoes on top and sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt. Do not stir. Cover and cook until the tomatoes begin to soften, about 7 minutes.
- 3. Stir all the vegetables together, cover, and cook until slightly softened, 10 to 15 minutes. Give everything a good stir, scraping and incorporating any browned bits on the bottom of the pot.
- 4. Cover and cook until the vegetables are tender, the tomatoes have broken down, and the sauce has thickened, 10 to 15 minutes.
- 5. Sprinkle the eggplant stew with parsley, if using, and serve immediately.