11 March 2014

Foodie Tuesday | Hopi Corn Stew

Hola, amigos!

You'll never guess where weeeee aaaaaaare! OK, I'll give you three guesses. Just shout 'em out....

... it's alright, I'll wait....

Can't guess?? OK, I'll tell you. We're in ARIZONA!!!

Yes, as you read this we are sunning ourselves by a pool, or traipsing through the petrified forest, or staring down at the Grand Canyon being amazed and overwhelmed. Also, possibly we're chasing lizards. Most of the research I did before take-off suggested that lizards are pretty much in hibernation right now during the "colder months" (seriously? wimps.) but the Girl is really determined to ferret one out to admire and harass.

Anyway, to really get in the spirit of our trip - visiting the in-laws while they Snowbird in the sunny southwest - I tried my hand at a traditional Navajo stew. Hopi Corn Stew is simple and very filling, and a great way to use up any leftover ground beef you might have hanging around. And makes you feel like a true southwesterner, to boot.
 
   
HOPI CORN STEW
Preparation: 15 minutes | Cooking Time: 45 minutes | Serves: 4
   
Ingredients:
  • 1 lb. ground beef (chopped roast beef is also a good substitute)
  • 1 tbsp. ghee, butter, olive oil or shortening (fat)
  • 2 cups fresh corn, sliced from cobs
  • 2 cups buttercup squash, finely diced
  • 2 cups + 3 tbsp. water
  • 2 tbsp. quinoa flour
  • 1 tsp. coarse salt
  • 1/4 tsp. ground black pepper
  • dash of cayenne pepper, to taste
        
Cooking Directions:
  1. Melt fat of choice in a large, thick-bottomed soup pot or high-sided skillet over medium-high heat. Add beef; season with salt and pepper, and saut√© until thoroughly browned.
      
  2. Add corn, squash, and 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 30-40 minutes or until corn is tender and squash has mostly dissolved.
      
  3. In a small cup, combine quinoa flour and 3 tbsp. water to make a paste. Stir paste into stew. Sprinkle with cayenne, to taste.
       
  4. Continue cooking another 5 minutes, stirring constantly (to prevent sticking), until stew thickens considerably.
      
  5. Remove from heat and serve with hard or flat bread.  

This is a very filling but very mild stew, so if you're at risk of dying from boredom and are looking to get your spicy freak-on, stir in 1-2 tbsp. of finely chopped green chilies with the corn, squash and water, or go crazy with the cayenne. That will heat things up a bit.

Also, I should note that while tasty (in our collective opinion), it is a very one-note dish. Freshen it up with a side of homemade salsa. We serve it on a bed of white rice, which is very popular with the kids.

I can't wait to share the recipes I'm collecting while on vacay, as well as all our (hundreds and hundreds and hundreds*) of photos! Stay tuned!

*Kidding**

**Not really
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Notes: one-pot-wonder | easy | freezer-friendly

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{adapted from a recipe found at of Din√© Bich'iya'}