In his excellent version of the traditional Chilean stew porotos granados, chef Alex Aguilera uses kidney beans in place of the customary cranberry beans, then folds in fresh basil and a swirl of paprika oil.
2 1/2-pound butternut squashpeeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes
4 cups fresh corn kernels, cut from about 6 ears
1 19-ounce can kidney beans, drained
3/4 cup chopped basil leaves
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 onion, coarsely chopped
1 red bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 green bell pepper, coarsely chopped
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons hot paprika
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
How to Make It
In a large pot, bring the water to a boil with the squash and corn. Cover and simmer over moderately low heat until the squash is just tender, about 15 minutes. Add the kidney beans and cook until the beans are hot. Transfer 3 cups of the squash mixture to a blender along with some of the liquid and 1/2 cup of the basil; puree. Return the puree to the pot and keep warm.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil. Add the onion and bell peppers and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, 8 minutes. Add the cumin, oregano and 1 teaspoon of the paprika and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 4 minutes. Stir the vegetables into the stew and season with salt and pepper.
In a small saucepan, heat the remaining 1/4 cup of oil. Add the remaining 1 teaspoon of paprika and cook over low heat until fragrant. Transfer to a small bowl.
Ladle the stew into bowls. Swirl in the paprika oil, sprinkle with the remaining 1/4 cup of chopped basil and serve.
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This stew is outstanding. I used organic vegetable broth instead of water and ras el hanout in place of the paprika. Had it for dinner last night, and some for lunch today. It was even better! I served it with crispy pancetta bits sprinkled on top.
A fantastic twist on a fall/winter favorite. This tastes great as is, but you could easily bulk it up with more veggies and/or beans if you wanted (celery, carrots, jalapeno, garbanzos would all be welcome). Honestly, I almost never eat vegetarian things, but I wouldn't add any meat to this, except maybe some crispy bacon on top. Prep ahead of time and this would be ever better/easier.
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