Fragrant Vegetable Stew with Corn Dumplings

    This is one of my most treasured recipes, and one that my stepdaughter asks me to make for her when she wants a special treat. Buttery corn dumplings top clove-scented vegetables to make this a wonderfully fragrant and colorful stew. The dumplings take only a few minutes to prepare, so don’t be dissuaded by their inclusion.


    Вј cup olive oil

    3 medium onions, diced

    3 cloves garlic, minced

    2 bay leaves

    4 whole cloves

    Вј teaspoon cayenne pepper

    10 cups Vegetable Stock

    1ВЅ teaspoons salt

    Freshly ground pepper to taste

    28-ounce can diced tomatoes

    Вѕ cup minced fresh parsley

    3 medium parsnips, peeled, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced

    2 medium carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise, and thinly sliced

    2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into ВЅ-inch dice

    12-ounce box frozen baby lima beans

    2 cups corn, fresh or frozen (10-ounce package)

    3 tablespoons butter


    Вѕ cup unbleached white flour

    Вј cup whole wheat flour

    2 tablespoons cornmeal

    2 teaspoons baking powder

    ВЅ teaspoon salt

    1 teaspoon sugar

    1 tablespoon chilled butter

    ВЅ cup corn, thawed if frozen

    в…” cup cold milk

    1. Heat the oil in a large pot and saut the onions and garlic for 5 minutes. Add the bay leaves, cloves, and cayenne pepper, and saut for 1 more minute.
    2. Add the vegetable stock, salt, pepper, tomatoes, ВЅ cup of the parsley, parsnips, carrots, potatoes, and lima beans and cook 45 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.
    3. Meanwhile prepare the dumplings. Combine the flours, cornmeal, baking powder, salt, and sugar in a medium bowl, and mix well. Cut in the butter until small crumbs are formed, then stir in the ВЅ cup corn and milk just until evenly moistened. Do not overmix. Cover and chill until ready to use. (The chilled batter will keep up to 24 hours.)
    4. Add the 2 cups corn, 3 tablespoons of butter, and remaining Вј cup of parsley to the stew, and cook 10 minutes more. Remove the bay leaves. May be prepared to this point up to 24 hours in advance, covered, and chilled. Reheat to boiling before proceeding with the next step.
    5. Keeping the soup at a simmer, drop the dumpling mixture in by tablespoonfuls and cover the pot. (You’ll get 6 to 8 dumplings.) Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a dumpling comes out clean. Serve the stew with 1 dumpling to each bowl.