Cashew-carrot stew

iStock/Donald Erickson

Carrots and other orange vegetables contain high levels of beta carotene, which our bodies convert into vitamin A. This vitamin helps keep the immune system strong, and the mucous members in the nose and throat healthy.

Makes 6 cups - 6 servings

A family favorite for years, this hearty dish is fun to serve friends, who are always surprised to find raisins and cashews in their stew. For their visual appeal and texture, I like to use whole cashews, rather than the less expensive halved or broken ones.

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 cups finely shredded white cabbage

2 cups finely chopped carrots

1 cup finely chopped onion

6 cups canned chicken broth or vegetable stock (prepare using stock concentrate, cubes, or powder)

¼ cup tomato paste

1 apple, peeled and cut into ½-inch chunks

1/3 cup uncooked long-grain brown rice

½ cup dark raisins

½ cup whole raw cashews

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

 

Heat the oil in a Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the cabbage, carrots, and onion; cook, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk together the chicken broth or vegetable stock and tomato paste in a measuring cup; add to the soup pot. Increase the heat to high and bring to a boil. Stir in the apple and rice. Reduce the heat; cover and simmer until the rice is al dente, about 35 minutes.

Stir in the raisins and cashews. Cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the rice is done, the raisins are plumped, and the rice is tender about 10 minutes. Season to taste.

Advance preparation

This stew will keep for up to 5 days in a covered container in the refrigerator. When reheating, stir in chicken broth, vegetable stock, or water to thin as desired.

Paulette Mitchell, a culinary instructor, television personality, spokesperson, freelance food writer, and the award-winning author of 13 cookbooks, is known internationally for her quick-to-prepare recipes with gourmet flair. Paulette's most recently published cookbook is "The Complete 15-Minute Gourmet: Creative Cuisine Made Fast and Fresh." She is also the author of "A Beautiful Bowl of Soup" and "The Spirited Vegetarian," which was voted "Best Book in the World on Cooking with Wine" at the 2005 Gourmand World Media Awards. Paulette says that international travel is her favorite source of culinary inspiration.