Recipe courtesy of Psychologies Magazine (April 2019) and taken from Cooking on a Bootstrap by Jack Monroe.
Spoon it into a bowl. Sit in your favourite spot. Hug that bowl. Enjoy every mouthful. You made this for yourself out of love. You are nourishing yourself. You are smart. You are kind to yourself. You can wash up tomorrow.
Serves : 1
Oil, for frying
2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped
1 onion, roughly chopped
A few handfuls of finely chopped or grated root veg (such as carrot, parsnip, spud or sweet potato – any root will do)
1 tsp paprika
150g tofu or 2 white fish fillets
1 x 400g tin of beans (baked, kidney, butter, cannellini, chickpeas – any beans) drained
1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes
A fistful of kale or spinach
Squeeze of lemon juice
A pinch of salt and a sprinkle of cracked black pepper
Step One : Warm a little oil in a pan over low heat and cook the garlic and onion, to soften. Stir, stir; slow and cathartic.
Step Two : Add the finely chopped or grated root veg and stir some more, then add the paprika and mix in. Stirring is key; it is soothing.
Step Three : Chuck in the chunks of tofu if you’re veggie or vegan, or white fish if you aren’t. Tip in the beans; whatever beans – add them for goodness. For laziness. For filling comfort. For making the dish stretch into an extra meal that you won’t have to cook. Pour over the tomatoes. The cheaper ones are sloppy and excellent for soups and stews.
Step Four : Shred some kale with your hands. Rip it the heck up with all the stress-busting physicality you can muster. Go on! Tear it to shreds. Drop it in. Stir it through, breathe and stir, and breathe.
Step Five : Bring to the boil – like your fury, heat it up and watch it roar … then, reduce to a simmer. Douse in lemon juice to brighten, and add some salt and pepper to amplify the flavours. Serve that stew, just for you.