This is a recipe taken from Slow Cooked (page 131) which I’ve written up here for people who really really love potatoes like I do. Sometimes you just have to stick with your kind of folk…
It’s a slow cooker recipe but if you don’t have one, adapt it to the stove or oven. You’ll need about third more liquid if not using the slow cooker as liquid evaporates more in traditional cooking. I’d give it about 1 hour in the oven at 180C or 45 minutes on a bubbling simmer on the stove.
Potato and Olive Stew with Preserved Lemons (serves 4)
- 1 x 400g tin of cannellini beans
- 4 large potatoes, peeled and cut in 2cm chunks
- 1 large onion, finely chopped
- 3 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
- 2 sprig fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon ground ginger
- 50g black olives halved
- 450ml hot vegetable stock or water
- 1 Scotch bonnet pepper, left whole or 1 teaspoon hot sauce of choice
- 1/2 preserved lemon, chopped finely
- salt and pepper to taste (remember the dish is already well seasoned with salt)
Drain the tinned beans well and wash the liquid off them as this makes them easier to digest. Then if you’re doing the slow cooker recipe, simply add everything to the slow cooker crock including the flesh and peel of the preserved lemon. Allow the Scotch bonnet pepper to bob about infusing it all with fruity spiciness and add the hot stock.
Put the lid on the crock and cook it all on low for 8 hours until the potatoes are just starting to crumble round the edges and collapse. Serve in deep bowls with fresh parsley.
If you are doing the stovetop version, add a little oil to your pan and sweat the onion and garlic until softened but not coloured for about 10 minutes. Then add the rest of the ingredients, making the extra liquid up with water rather stock to prevent the dish getting too salty.
Bring it to the boil and immediately turn the heat down so the stew bubbles and blips gently and simmer for 45-60 minutes until the potatoes and beans are just starting to thicken it all and serve. It reheats well too for packed lunches or leftovers when you don’t feel like cooking twice in a row.
I use Belazu preserved lemons quite often but there’s a recipe for making your own here along with a meaty version of this dish with goat. I love the salty bitter kick of preserved lemons with lamb too or they go well with a vinaigrette for a punchy salad dressing.