Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Three Sisters' Stew

From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...In American Indian tradition, corn, beans and squash are considered to be the Three Sisters. Tribal elders knew these crops flourished when they were planted together and they viewed that harmony as an extension of a belief that all things are intertwined and depend on each other to grow and thrive. The flavors of these vegetables blend well together, so it is no wonder that the combination came to be used in soups and stews that were also called the Three Sisters. There are many versions of this stew and the one I'm featuring is especially easy to make. My interpretation of this dish is actually more like a soup than a stew, so I serve it over a scoop of brown rice to give it more substance. This is a very straightforward recipe and you can't go wrong with it as long as you follow the times suggested in the recipe's directions. You want the vegetables to be a bit past crisp tender, but under no circumstances should they be overcooked. This is a remarkably flavorful stew and I know that those of you who try it will be happy with the results. The vegetables used to make it are now plentiful in local farmers' markets, so if you are a locovore, the stew will have a special appeal to you. Here is how it is made.

Three Sisters' Stew...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite inspired by Heather and Martha Zschock

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup chopped onions
1 tablespoon chopped garlic
1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
2 (14.5-oz.) chicken or vegetable broth
1/2 cup dry white wine or vermouth
1-1/2 cups edamame or lima beans
1-1/2 cups peeled and cubed butternut squash
1-1/2 cups summer squash, halved vertically and sliced
1-1/2 cups zucchini,halved vertically and sliced
1-1/2 cups fresh or thawed frozen corn
1/4 cup chopped parsley
Salt and pepper to taste
2 cups hot cooked brown rice

1) Heat olive oil in a large pan set over medium heat until it shimmers. Add onions, garlic and thyme and saute until onions are translucent. Add stock, wine and edamame. Bring to a boil and cook for 5 minutes.
2) Add all remaining ingredients, return contents to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer, covered, over low heat for 15 minutes or until vegetables are tender. Adjust salt and pepper to taste. Fill each of 4 bowls with 1/2 cup brown rice. Ladle an equal portion of stew into each bowl. Serve immediately. Yield 4 large servings.

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Ginny Hartzler said...

But the soup plate! I want it, it is truly beautiful!! Sometimes, your dishes outshine the food, and this is one of them!

Diane said...

This sounds delicious but I am sure I would never find edamame here! Hope all is well with you. Take care Diane

Kim said...

With great fresh products from farmer's market, I bet this stew is perfect!

Big Dude said...

I haven't heard of this dish but now that you mention it, I have heard of these crops as the three sisters and even tried growing them together once but didn't get it quite right. Your stew looks very colorful and healthy.

From the Kitchen said...

This is a combination that my mother often made. She, however, had a tendency to overcook vegetables but the broth was certainly tasty! Thanks to Ginny, I had to go back and look at the soup bowl. Very nice. Have a great day.


David said...

Mary, Looks good to me... This would make a nice lunch with a good piece of bread and butter. Thanks and Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

T.W. Barritt at Culinary Types said...

What a great recipe, with a back story on sustainability and thoughtful agriculture!

A Sunflower Life said...

I love the story behind this stew. Makes me want to plant a garden with corn, beans and squash intertwined. I also think it will be fun to mix-up the veggies to see which combinations work best. A perfect farmer's market meal!

Tricia @ Saving room for dessert said...

I love the story of the three sisters - I never heard that before. Love all the tips too. Sounds delicious!

Chiara said...

This sounds delicious Mary, I never heard that story before..have a great week..

Daniela Grimburg said...

That's a very nice story about the 3 sisters that comes along with this delicious stew.
Love the touch of vermouth, it gives such a nice aroma to the dish!

kitchen flavours said...

I have not heard of The Three Sisters Stew. Looks delicious! Thank you for sharing, hope you have a lovely week!

Nammi said...

delicious looking bowl of beautiful flavours

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