Monday, January 17, 2011

Marak Gar'A Hamra Wa Batat Helwa [Pumpkin & Sweet Potato Stew]

This dish goes well with roast chicken.

2 ounces unsalted butter
1 large yellow onion, chopped finely
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 cinnamon stick
pinch of cayenne pepper or 1/2 teaspoon harissa, or to taste
2 cups vegetable or chicken stock
1/8 teaspoon ground saffron threads
1 1/2 pounds butternut squash or other firm winter squash, peeled and cubed
1 pound and 2 ounces sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
1/2 cup raisins
1 T honey
cilantro leaves, roughly chopped

Preparing the pumpkin and sweet potato stew:
Melt the butter in a large saucepan over low heat. Add the onion and cook gently, stirring occasionally for 5 minutes, until softened. Add the garlic, ginger, turmeric, cinnamon stick and cayenne pepper or harissa. Stir over low heat for 1 to 2 minutes, or until fragrant. Pour in the stock, add the saffron, then increase the heat to medium and bring to a boil.

Add the pumpkin, sweet potato, raisins and honey and season with salt and freshly ground pepper. Cover and simmer for 15 minutes or until all the vegetables are tender. Remove the cinnamon stick, transfer to a serving dish and sprinkle chopped cilantro over the top.

Seres 4 to 6


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