North African Bean Stew

Prep: 15 minutes Cook: 45 minutes


This is a very thick and hearty stew, wonderful served with a loaf of crusty whole grain bread.


  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 1/4 cups vegetable broth
  • 2 cups red potatoes, cubed
  • 15 ounce can garbanzo beans, drained and rinsed
  • 15 ounce can white beans, drained and rinsed
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 2 tbsp peanut butter
  • 1/2 tsp cumin
  • 1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 tsp coriander
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 cups fresh spinach, chopped


Place the onion, celery and garlic in a soup pot with 1/4 cup of the broth. Cook, stirring frequently until vegetables soften slightly, about 3-4 minutes. Add the remaining broth and the potatoes. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and cook for about 10 minutes, until potatoes are fairly tender. Add the remaining ingredients, except the spinach, and simmer over low heat until stew has thickened and potatoes are falling apart, about 20 minutes. Stir in the spinach and continue to simmer gently for another 10 minutes

Hints: When using only small amounts of tomato paste in recipes, I recommend freezing the leftover tomato paste in 2 tablespoon amounts (it's easy to add to recipes while still frozen), because leftover tomato paste does not keep for long in a jar in the refrigerator. Tomato paste also is sold in tubes which makes it easy to squeeze out just the amount that you need for a recipe.