“THREE SISTERS” STEW
1 small sugar pumpkin or 1 large butternut or carnival squash (about 2 pounds)
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 medium green or red bell pepper, cut into short, narrow strips
14- to 16-ounce can diced tomatoes, with liquid
2 cups cooked pinto beans (about 3/4 cup raw), or 16-ounce can, drained and rinsed
2 cups corn kernels (from 2 large or 3 medium ears)
1 cup homemade or canned vegetable stock, or water
1 or 2 small fresh hot chiles, seeded and minced, or
4-ounce can chopped mild green chiles
1 teaspoon each: ground cumin, dried oregano
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 to 4 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Halve the pumpkin or squash and scoop out the seeds and fibers. Place
cut side up in a shallow baking dishes and cover tightly with foil.
Bake for 40 to 50 minutes, or until just done but still firm. When
cool enough to handle, scoop out the pulp, and cut into large dice.
Set aside until needed.
Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onion and sautÃ© over medium-low
heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sautÃ© until
the onion is golden.
Add the pumpkin or squash dice and all the remaining ingredients
except the last 2 and bring to a simmer. Simmer gently, covered,
until all the vegetables are tender, about 20 to 25 minutes. Season
to taste with salt and pepper.
If time allows, let the stew stand for 1 to 2 hours before serving,
then heat through as needed. Just before serving, stir in the
cilantro. The stew should be thick and very moist but not soupy; add
additional stock or water if needed. Serve in shallow bowls.