Vegan stew with dumplings

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Today I'm sharing a recipe of a vegan/veggie stew I made last week and it was by far the yummiest stew I've ever made! Its really easy to make and you can adapt it to have whatever veg you like, perfect for these colder nights drawing in. I had such great feedback when I posted it on my Instagram and a few friends wanting the recipe so decided to share it on here.

Here's what you'll need - Serves 4

For the stew

1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, finely sliced
3 garlic cloves, sliced
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 tsp cumin
1 tbsp dried thyme
3 medium carrots, sliced
1 red pepper, chopped
1 yellow pepper, chopped
2 courgettes, sliced thickly
x2 400g tinned tomatoes
250ml veggie stock
400g tin of cooked puy lentils (I used Merchant Gourmet- ready to eat)

For the dumplings

2 tbsp of veggie suet (I used veggie Atora Light)
4oz self-raising flour
5 tbsp of cold water, more if needed
a pinch of salt

1. Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based pan set on a medium heat and add the onions and gently cook for 5-10 mins until softened.

2. Add the garlic, spices, dried thyme, carrots and peppers and cook for 5 minutes.

3. Add the tomatoes, stock, courgettes and cook for 30-40 mins on a low heat. Place the lid on top but leave a slight gap to let some steam out.

4. Whilst the stew is cooking, make your veggie dumplings. In a bowl add the suet, flour, salt and gradually add the water. Using your clean hands mix together all the ingredients until its in a firm dough. Next flour your hands and form 8 small dough balls. Make the roughly all the same size and put to one side.

5. Once your veg is nearly cooked, add the lentils and stir gently to combine.

6. Now add the dumpling. Place them round the outside first and into the middle of the pan. Make sure to leave a slight gap between each dumpling. (They double in size whilst cooking)

7. Bring the pan back to medium heat and pop the lid on top tightly. Cook for a further 15-20 mins until the dumplings become firm and sponge like. A bit like when cakes are cooked and they spring back.

8. Serve with creamy mash potato or even try it with wild rice. Any leftovers can be placed in a dish, cover with left over mash, grate some cheese over the top and cook in the oven until the top is golden brown. Perfect veggie cottage pie for later in the week!

Enjoy sweeties!

Adapted from this recipe

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