Warming trend: Hot soups and stews

  • Updated: January 13, 2010 - 12:25 PM

CALICO CHICKEN

Serves 4.

• 3 lb. chicken parts, such as thighs, legs, wings, or a mixture

• 1 tsp. salt, or to taste

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 1/4 c. all-purpose flour (about)

• 3 to 4 tbsp. peanut, grapeseed or olive oil

• 1 onion, sliced

• 1 red or green bell pepper, diced

• 3 garlic cloves, crushed

• 3 tbsp. chopped parsley

• 11/2 tsp. fresh thyme, chopped, or 3/4 tsp. dried thyme

• 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper, or to taste

• 1 c. canned tomatoes, drained

• 2 c. chicken broth

• 1 (10-oz.) package frozen corn kernels

Directions

Rinse the chicken under cold running water and pat dry with paper toweling. Rub the chicken with the salt and black pepper.

Place the chicken in a plastic or brown bag and toss with the flour, coating lightly all over, adding flour if necessary.

Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet or pot. Add the chicken a few pieces at a time and cook over high heat for 5 or so minutes or until browned, turning often. Transfer the browned chicken to a plate; don't crowd the frying pan.

After all the chicken is browned, reduce the heat to medium low. Stir into the pan the onion, bell pepper, garlic, parsley, thyme and cayenne. Sauté the vegetables for 5 to 7 minutes or until softened, stirring.

Add the tomatoes and chicken broth and bring to a boil. Return the chicken to the pan. Reduce the heat to low, cover and cook the chicken, stirring occasionally, for about 40 minutes or until a leg or thigh is clear at the bone when cut with a knife.

Stir in the corn and cook 10 minutes longer or until the corn is tender and the dish is piping hot, stirring a time or two. Serve with rice.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 580 Fat 32 g Sodium 1,310 mg

Carbohydrates 27 g Saturated fat 8 g Calcium 64 mg

Protein 47 g Cholesterol 130 mg Dietary fiber 4 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 vegetable, 6 medium-fat meat.

LENTILS AND MUSHROOM CHILI

Serves 4.

Note: Specialty mushrooms such as shiitake, cremini, or portobello are pricey but healthful and delicious. Remember, lentils are fast-cooking and don't require soaking. Corn muffins or tortillas are good with this dish.

• 2 or 3 tbsp. corn, peanut or olive oil

• 1 onion, sliced

• 1 red or yellow bell pepper, seeded and cut into thin strips

• 3 garlic cloves, crushed or finely minced

• 2 or 3 jalapeño peppers, finely chopped

• 1/2 lb. fresh mushroom, sliced, or 1 c. sliced canned mushrooms

• 1 tbsp. mild chile powder

• 1 tbsp. fresh snipped thyme, or 1 tsp. dried thyme

• 2 tsp. ground cumin

• 2 c. vegetable or chicken broth

• 1 c. water, more if needed

• Coarsely ground black pepper

• 11/2 c. brown or green lentils or a mixture of both

• Cooked rice, white or brown, optional

Directions

Heat the oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven. Stir in the onion, bell pepper, garlic and jalapeño peppers. Sauté, stirring, over low heat for 5 minutes or until the onions and peppers are soft.

Stir in the mushrooms and sauté for about 5 minutes longer, turning over a few times. Stir in the chile powder, thyme and cumin.

Add the broth, water and black pepper and bring the pot to a boil.

Rinse the lentils and add to the pot. Reduce the heat immediately to medium low, and cook the chili covered for about 25 minutes or until the lentils are tender, stirring occasionally.

If desired, serve over rice.

Nutrition information per serving without rice:

Calories 345 Fat 8 g Sodium 500 mg

Carbohydrates 50 g Saturated fat 1 g Calcium 72 mg

Protein 21 g Cholesterol 0 mg Dietary fiber 14 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 3 bread/starch, 1 1/2 lean meat, 1/2 fat.

BLACK-EYED PEA SOUP

Serves 6.

• 1 lb. dried black-eyed peas (2 c.)

• 3 tbsp. peanut, olive or grapeseed oil

• 1 large onion, sliced

• 3 garlic cloves, crushed

• 1 tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped, or 11/2 tsp. dried thyme, crumbled

• 1 bay leaf

• 1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes, or to taste

• 1/2 tsp. ground nutmeg or allspice, or more if desired

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 8 c. water

• 1 smoked turkey wing (about 11/2 lb.) or a meaty ham bone

• 1/4 c. gold or dark rum, if desired

• 1 tsp. salt, or to taste

Directions

Pick over the peas, discarding any stones or debris; rinse well with cold water, place in a large bowl and cover with cold water. Soak for 1 to 2 hours; not overnight.

Meanwhile, heat the oil in a 4- or 5-quart pot. Stir in the onion, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, red pepper flakes, nutmeg or allspice and black pepper. Sauté, stirring over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until the onions are tender.

Stir in the water. Add the turkey wing or ham bone. Bring to a boil, cover, reduce the heat to simmer and cook for about 45 minutes. Using a large fork, break off or cut the turkey or ham meat from the bones into strips.

Drain the soaked black-eyed peas, rinse with cold water and add to the pot. Bring to a boil and the reduce the heat to simmer. Stir in the rum, if desired.

Cover the pot and cook the soup for about 1 hour, or until the peas are tender and the soup is creamy, stirring occasionally. When done, stir in the salt, if desired, and heat 15 minutes longer.

Remove the turkey or ham bone before serving the soup.

Nutrition information per serving:

Calories 385 Fat 11 g Sodium 735 mg Carbohydrates 50 g Saturated fat 2 g Calcium 75 mg Protein 25 g Cholesterol 17 mg Dietary fiber 14 g Diabetic exchanges per serving: 1 vegetable, 3 bread/starch, 2 lean meat, 1 fat.

CARIBBEAN CURRIED BEEF STEW

Makes 4 generous servings.

Note: Ready-made curry is sold in supermarket and specialty stores, but you can make your own by combining a heaping tablespoon or so of ground turmeric, 2 teaspoons of ground ginger, and a generous pinch of ground cayenne pepper, cinnamon and nutmeg.

• 4 lb. beef stew meat with bones or 21/2 lb. boneless beef chuck

• 2 tbsp. peanut, corn or coconut oil

• 11/2 tsp. salt, or to taste

• Freshly ground black pepper

• 1 onion, sliced

• 3 garlic cloves, crushed

• 2 tsp. fresh crushed oregano or marjoram, or 1 tsp. of the dried herb

• 2 tbsp. curry powder, or to taste

• 11/2 c. beef broth

• 11/2 c. beer or water, more if needed

• 1 large white all-purpose potato, or white yam (called batata in specialty markets)

• 1 (10-oz.) pkg. frozen whole okra pods, or 1/2 lb. fresh okra if available

Directions

Cut the stew beef into 2-inch pieces or have butcher do so, trimming away excess fat. Pat dry with paper toweling.

Heat the oil in a large pot or Dutch oven. Add the beef a few pieces at a time so as not to crowd them, and brown lightly over medium high heat for 4 or 5 minutes.

Remove the meat from the pan when browned and continue browning the remaining beef the same way. Then, sprinkle the beef with the salt and pepper and set aside.

Reduce the heat to medium low and add the onion, garlic, oregano or marjoram to the pan. Sauté for 4 or 5 minutes, stirring a time or two.

Stir in the curry powder and sauté, stirring, 2 or 3 minutes more. Return the browned beef to the pot. Add the beef broth and the beer or water.

Bring the pot to a boil, then cover, reduce the heat to low, and cook the stew for 1 hour.

Peel and dice the potato and stir into the pot. Cover and simmer for 1 hour longer or until the meat and potatoes are tender and the beef broth is slightly thicken, stirring occasionally.

Stir in the okra and cook 10 to 15 minutes longer or until the pods are tender but not mushy. Serve the stew with rice or noodles.

Nutrition information per serving without rice:

Calories 700 Fat 37 g Sodium 1,395 mg Saturated fat 13 g

Carbs 27 g Calcium 150 mg

Protein 57 g Cholesterol 155 mg Dietary fiber 5 g

Diabetic exchanges per serving: 2 bread/starch, 7 medium-fat meat, 1/2 fat.

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