Balkan Vegetable Casserole

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I decided a no meat night was in order tonight so made this hearty vegetable stew which hails from the Balkans. I had something very similar in a restaurant in Sydney about a year ago and it was delicious. Sadly I can never experience it again at that restaurant – my friend and I shamefully tried to do a runner at the end of our meal. Mistake. We were pursued, and caught by our burly Czech waitress. The humiliation of it all.

RECIPE:

INGREDIENTS:
1 aubergine
120g okra (halved lengthways)
225g frozen peas
225g green beans (cut into 2.5cm pieces)
2 onions (finely chopped)
450g potatoes (peeled and diced into 2.5cm cubes)
4 zucchini (cut into 1cm slices)
1 red capsicum (seeded and sliced)
1x400g can of chopped tomatoes
150ml vegetable stock
4 tablespoons olive oil
5 tablespoons continental parsley (chopped)
1 teaspoon sweet paprika
1 teaspoon caraway seeds
salt & pepper

TOPPING:
3 medium tomatoes (sliced)
1 zucchini (sliced)

DIRECTIONS:
Preheat the oven to 190ºC.
Combine all the vegetables in a large casserole dish (with a lid). In a separate bowl, combine the tomatoes, stock, oil, parsley, paprika, caraway and salt & pepper. Pour this over the vegetables and stir well. Now arrange the additional zucchini and tomatoes over the top of the mixture. Add a final sprinkle of salt & pepper. Pop on the lid tightly and cook in the oven for 60-70 minutes.

SERVING:
Hot with some crusty bread.

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