Butternut squash & butterbean stew

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Here’s a warming winter one-pot which we simply cannot stop cooking. It’s perfect for a ‘working from home lunch’, or a slow Saturday stew too. It’s robust, nourishing and packed with flavour.

Vegcentric. We believe that putting plants at the heart of the diet, or plate, is the key to sustainable eating, and if one chooses to eat meat it should be high welfare, and enjoyed in moderation very much on the periphery. Well, this recipe is that! It’s 98% vegan, and ‘seasoned’ with half a tablespoon of nduja per person… just enough to give a richer, fattier mouthfeel, and to top the stew with a bright, smokey pungency. If you prefer to keep it fully vegan, a tablespoon of harissa will work perfectly too.

If you can find a tasty organic squash we suggest keeping the skin on – it’ll add an additional texture and lots of fibre.

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cooking time: 40 minutes

This recipes serves 2 people.

Ingredients:

  • 2 onions
  • 1 stalk celery
  • ½ butternut squash
  • 1 chilli, red or green
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic
  • Thyme
  • Rosemary
  • Generous pinch flaky salt
  • Generous pinch black pepper
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • 1 tin butterbeans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tbsp nduja
  • 2 tbsp toasted almonds
  • 2 tsp red wine vinegar

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 210 degrees and have an oven rack near the top.
  2. Start by preparing the vegetables: chunky dice the onion, slice the celery into 1 cm thick slices, chunky chop the butternut squash into roughly 2 cm by 2 cm chunks, and finely slice the chilli and garlic. Strip the thyme and rosemary from its stalks and roughly chop – we quite like leaving the herbs fairly rustic in this instance.
  3. Toss all the prepared veggies with the olive oil and salt and pepper, and spread evenly in an oven-proof skillet, saucepan or casserole dish; alternatively you can roast the veggies on a roasting tray first, and then transfer into a saucepan and finish the recipe on the hob if needs be. Either way, roast the vegetables in the preheated oven for 22 minutes.
  4. After 22 mins remove the skillet from the oven, and immediately add ¼ cup of white wine which should sizzle immediately – this will help to boil off the alcohol. Then add the butterbeans and 1 cup of water, and return the skillet to the oven for a further 16 minutes.
  5. Alternatively, if you’ve roasted your vegetables on a tray, now tip them into a medium saucepan and add the wine first. Bring this to the boil for 1 minute, then add the butter beans and water, and bring to a gentle simmer for 16 minutes.
  6. Simultaneously, roast the almonds for 6 minutes on a separate roasting tray, just until golden and smelly nutty and toasty. Allow these to cool and then coarsely chop.
  7. Meanwhile, heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil in a small frying pan and add the nduja. Allow this to melt and sizzle in its own fat for a few minutes, then add the toasted and chopped almonds. Keep the red wine vinegar separate, this will simply be sprinkled over the stew at the end.
  8. Serve your stew in warmed bowls, topped with the nduja oil and crispy almonds, as well as a teaspoon or so of red wine vinegar which will brighten all the flavours.

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