Monday, September 18, 2006

Autumn Harvest Stew

Let me preface this by saying this is the most fantastic stew I've ever had. And I do not exaggerate.

After making the VwaV stew last week, I realized I'm sorta all hopped up on the approach of fall, and, as a consequence, all hopped up on soup and stew recipes. So I bumped around on the internet, googling autumn stews. And lo and behold, it took me to my favorite Fatfreevegan recipe site. And lo and behold, they had this interesting sounding little gem on there.

I had my doubts initially--pumpkin? With tomotoes? And HOMINY? All in the same thing?

But holy crap, was I wrong.

The stew tastes exactly like autumn. It is spicy, the kind of spicy that warms you up from deep inside your belly and radiates out (like a pair of warm mittens) until your body is just humming with toasty goodness. It is also very rich and aromatic--thank heaven for Indian-spices. But it's also got a delicate sweetness to it, courtesy of the sweet potatoes and the molasses. Definitely don't underestimate its fiery kick though (once you start adding the chili powder in, you'll go into shock, muttering to yourself, Really? THAT MUCH chili powder?!?)...

Not only does it taste just like autumn, it also radiates with the fiery and brilliant colors of autumn as well, as you can see from the pictures. Almost every autumn color is represented there: the celery as the green of leaves not yet turned, the fenugreek as the sparkling gold of brilliantly sunny yellow leaves, the sweet potatoes as the lovely mellow orangey-hued ones that have fallen to the ground, the pumpkin as the feisty jack-o-lanterns grinning from everyone's front porches, the tomatoes and spices as the fiery red, fiercely burning autumnal branches, and the black beans as the dark and loamy earth after a full autumn's rain. Absolutely beautiful.

This dish is fantastically tasty and gorgeous to look at, and it's also really damn simple and low-in-fat.

The only major changes I made were to omit the asafoetida and (I just realized I forgot the last step) the lemon. I wouldn't change a damn thing, other than this. Not a damn thing.

I just cannot possibly gush any more about this stew than I already have--definitely one of the best recipes I've stumbled across in a long long time. Go run out and cook it! NOW! What are you waiting for?!?!?

  • 2 c. onions

  • 2 T. sautéing liquid (I just used water)

  • 1 c. chopped celery

  • 1/4 c. garlic (I used moreso around 1/8 c.)

  • 1 T. molasses

  • 28-oz. can diced tomatoes

  • 16-oz. can mashed pumpkin

  • 3 c. black beans, cooked

  • 1 c. water

  • 1 c. chopped sweet potato

  • 1 c. white hominy, not drained

  • 1 1/2 t. salt

  • 1 1/2 t. cumin

  • 1 1/2 T. chili powder

  • 1 t. crushed red pepper

  • 1/4 t. fenugreek powder

  • 1/4 t. coriander

  • 1 t. ginger powder

Sauté onions in liquid until softened. Add remaining ingredients except lemon juice and cook. Add lemon juice. Cook until thick and sweet potato pieces are soft.

from The Fat-Free Vegan

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Start to finish, this recipe took slightly less than an hour to cook (thought I'd mention this seeing as the recipe doesn't mention cook times). A bit too sweet for my taste, could maybe have used some extra spices, but otherwise quite good. Oh, and WHAT LEMON JUICE?