Tuesday, September 2, 2014

VeganMoFo 2014 Day 2 - Baja White Bean Stew

This is one I've never made before. Baja White Bean Stew comes from the September 2010 McDougall newsletter:

Baja White Bean Stew

This is a quick and easy bean dish that is so delicious at this time of the year with fresh produce available everywhere. I have been making this often lately with fresh tomatoes and lacinato kale from our garden.

Preparation Time: 20 minutes
Cooking Time: 30-35 minutes
Servings: 6

1 1/2 cups vegetable broth
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 cup corn kernels, fresh or frozen
3 cans white cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
2 cups chopped fresh tomatoes
1 4 ounce can chopped green chilies
1 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/8 teaspoon crushed red pepper
3 cups fresh chopped, kale, chard or spinach
hot sauce to taste (optional)

Place 1/2 cup of the broth in a large pot. Add onion and garlic. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes, until onion is soft. Add remaining broth, corn, beans, tomatoes, chilies, and seasonings. Mix well. Bring to a boil, cover partially and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add greens and cook for an additional 10 minutes (only 3 minutes for spinach). Season with hot sauce to taste.

Serve over baked or roasted potatoes, whole grains, or rolled up in a tortilla. This is also wonderful served in a bowl with some fresh bread on the side.

Hints: When fresh corn is in season, slice the kernels off 1 or 2 ears to use in this recipe. To use frozen corn, thaw first under cold running water (place in a strainer and hold under the water for about a minute). Bottled minced garlic may be used, you'll need about 1 1/2 teaspoons. Smoked paprika is available in most natural food stores. It adds a delicious flavor to this dish. If you cannot find it, leave it out or use regular paprika instead. Any leafy green is delicious in this recipe. Adjust the cooking times according to the greens used.

That's how Mary McDougall makes it. As for my own variations, I used both frozen corn and frozen spinach, but did use fresh tomatoes. I'm one of those people who take an almost zen approach to chopping vegetables (When I *do* chop instead of using already cut ones, like canned or frozen, that is), and used to dice tomatoes nice and slow, first slicing the tomato, then cutting each slice individually into a dice. Then I found this video:

and found a faster way to do it. It works fine, and really is a whole lot faster, but I still prefer to spend my time cutting each individual slice. As I said, it sort of zen-like, a mini-meditation.

Back to the recipe.

Only other change I made was to use a bit more garlic. I used about 2 tablespoons, as opposed to Mary's 1 1/2 teaspoons, of the bottled minced stuff. Besides tasting so great, garlic has the ability to lower cholesterol levels, and I could really use that feature of it. My husband never complains about foods being too garlicky, so I just toss in a lot every chance I get.

The recipe came together quickly, so it's great for a work night. Hubby and I each grabbed our own bread to dunk - one slice of Alvarado Street California Style for me, about 5 of a mass-produced brand whole wheat for him, and away we dunked. I felt the spices were just right; he added his ever-present sriracha sauce to his. It's amazing we've stayed married this long! LOL

As for the amount, it made about 6 cups total after everything was cooked, enough for one big bowl each and a little left over for a small second helping. It filled us up nicely. Hubby didn't even look for a snack that night.

Would I make it again? Maybe, but it's not going into a regular rotation. It's nice, but it's too soon to tell if it'll be a favorite, bumping something else off our menus. Time will tell.


  1. I'm with you on the garlic! The more, the better, and I'm one of the few people that doesn't mind it raw. Yum!

  2. this looks and sounds really good! i love beans and corn together - reminds me of succotash.