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Italian vegetable stew

(Food Styling/Kay Chun; Romulo Yanes/Gourmet)
October 14, 2009

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Serves 6

1/3 cup olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
2 stalks celery, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
3 carrots, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
2 medium eggplant, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup water
1 can (28 ounces) whole tomatoes, drained and chopped (reserve juice)
2 red bell peppers, cored, seeded, and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
Salt and black pepper, to taste
3/4 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 1/4 pounds zucchini, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced
2 medium boiling potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1. In a large flameproof casserole over medium-high heat, heat the oil. When it is hot, add the onions, celery, carrots, and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are pale golden.

2. Add the eggplant and water. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until the eggplant softens.

3. Stir in the tomatoes and their juices with the bell peppers, salt, and black pepper. Lower the heat and cook, uncovered, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes.

4. Meanwhile, in a saucepan of boiling salted water, cook the green beans for 5 minutes or until tender but still crisp. With a slotted spoon, transfer to a bowl.

5. Add the zucchini to the green bean water. Cook for 5 minutes or until tender but still crisp. Transfer to the bowl of green beans.

6. Add the potatoes to the vegetable water. Cook for 10 minutes or until they are just tender.

7. Add the beans, zucchini, and potatoes to the eggplant mixture. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 15 minutes or until all the vegetables are soft. (Total cooking time is 70 minutes.) Taste for seasoning and add more salt and pepper, if you like. Adapted from Gourmet, October 2009 Notes: