Chickpea/sweet potato/red wine stew

chickpea stew with rosemary dumplings

We’re still working our way through the sweet potatoes and carrots from the CSA. And I’m still fascinated by star anise. This is a nice way to incorporate both. The pleasing texture of chickpeas goes well with the sweet potatoes and carrots. The mild sweet flavors blend with the slight dryness of the wine to make a rich, unusual broth. Sage and thyme, star anise and cinnamon – delicious together. I made cornmeal dumplings, but lighter and less stodgy than you would expect.

Did you know that Neil Diamond wrote Red Red Wine? It’s true, he did!
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carrots & fennel braised in white wine with star anise

I’m slightly obsessed with star anise at the moment! It’s so pretty and so tasty. Warm, a little sweet, a little spicy. I have several bunches of carrots from the CSA, and this seemed like a nice thing to do with them. Simple, satisfying, the sweetness of the star anise complements that of the carrots, but lets them shine in all their carrotyness. You could make this without the fennel, but it seemed to fit so perfectly, being another fall veg with a sweetish edge, and matching nicely with the flavor of the anise. This is good warm when you make it, and cool as a little salad the next day.

Here’s MF Doom’s Star Anis, another one of my favorites!
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