Updated: Just In Time For Thursday

In the years since I published Just In Time For Thursday, a fall/holiday/anytime vegetarian^ main course inspired by a Sweet Tomatoes pasta dish, it’s evolved quite a bit. Pasta is out (though you could still add it), chick peas are in, and whole spices are added at the start of the sauté, Indian-style.

^ Vegan, with the cheese garnish omitted

My normal batch is a double, in a giant 14″ skillet – 8-10 servings – but I’ve put measurements for normal humans below.

I love barleywine or any brown ale with strong hop characteristics and a good ABV kick as a pairing. The dish is quite sweet for a main; many regular browns don’t provide enough contrast. Stouts and porters can also work well, again if they’re not overly malty.


In a large skillet or shallow pan, sauté in olive oil over medium heat until browned:

  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 4-6 clove garlic, peeled, smashed, and diced
  • Crushed red pepper to taste (1-2 tsp?)
  • Salt to taste

Add and sauté until just cooked through:

  • 1-2 sweet potatoes, diced

Add and sauté until liquid is mostly absorbed/evaporated and apples are slightly softened:

  • 2 cans chick peas, drained (or about 1 1/2 C dry chick peas, cooked ahead of time however you like)
  • 1-2 Granny Smith apples, diced
  • Optional: 1/2 bag spinach, roughly chopped
  • 6 oz. or so raisins (or other dried fruit)
  • Apple cider vinegar to taste (1-2 tsp?)
  • Liquid aminos to taste (1-2 tsp?)
  • Maple syrup to taste (1 T?)
  • Salt to taste

Serve garnished with:

  • Roasted, salted almond pieces, chopped or crushed
  • Optional: shredded cheddar cheese