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Autumn Stew

a bowl of food with stew

Photo: James Lenhart / Contributor 

Just as the weather turns cool, fresh fenugreek starts appearing at some specialty grocers.

An herb that has been around since the Bronze Age, it is used in Middle Eastern cuisine and is very popular as an ingredient in India. The seeds are popped in oil and added sparingly to stews for a slightly bitter note or crushed to become part of pickle masalas. The leaves, fresh or dry, are usually added at the end of cooking to extract their heady fragrance.

Here is a simple stew in which the sweetness of the yams balances nicely with the smokiness of coriander seeds and bitter fragrance of fenugreek leaves. It can either be enjoyed with rice or bread or on its own as a soup. Either way, it’s a heartwarming way to welcome autumn.

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