Uzbekistani Vegetable Stew

Makes 6 servings Sifra

This stew, called umlama in Uzbekistan, can be prepared only with vegetables, or you can make it with cubed beef that gets seared with the onions in step 1. Making the vegetable-only version and serving it with meat on the side like beef, lamb, pork, chicken, or sausages creates a meal that both vegetarians and omnivores can enjoy.

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 large yellow onion, sliced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, sliced
  • 1-15 oz. can of chickpeas, drained
  • ½ teaspoon cumin seeds
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • 1½ teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 1 small eggplant, peeled, halved, and sliced
  • 4 Roma tomatoes, sliced
  • 2 green bell peppers, sliced
  • 1 garnet sweetpotato, halved and sliced
  • 3 Sifra potatoes, halved and sliced
  • ½ small green cabbage, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup tap water
  • Fresh parsley or cilantro for garnish
  1. Heat at the oil in a large heavy skillet over medium high heat. Add the onion and cook until golden brown, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic, chickpeas, cumin, coriander, salt and pepper, and continue cooking for another 5 minutes.
  2. Add the carrots, eggplant, tomatoes, bell peppers, sweet potato, Sifra potatoes, and cabbage in layers over the onion mixture. Pour in a cup of water, cover, reduce heat to low, and cook for 1 hour or until vegetables are tender. Adding more water as needed if the bottom begins to burn.
  3. Garnish with parsley or cilantro, serve hot.