Week 12 of 12 Weeks of Winter Squash, and I am going out with a bang: a recipe with 20 ingredients. Twenty! If you want to clean out the pantry, this recipe could be your friend.
By all means, find a way to simplify the ingredient list to fit your needs, but I urge you not to omit the peanut butter. What? With 20 ingredients, surely you expected an odd ball like peanut butter to make its way into a stew?
Before preparing this dish and enjoying it myself, I was right there with anyone who thought peanut butter in a butternut squash stew was odd, if not downright ridiculous. I enjoy peanut butter, but my uses for it extend to slathering it across a sliced apple, sandwiching it between a piece of bread, baking it into a dessert, or rolling it into buckeyes.
I definitely did not think to pair peanut butter with butternut squash, but it works, cutting the sweetness of the squash. My lukewarm feelings towards butternut squash are due solely to the fact that I find it too sweet (ironic given my love of all things dessert), so the result worked for me.
Now that our 12-week endeavor has drawn to a close, I hope you have found a few winter squash recipes to get you through the rest of the winter. Twenty-seven recipes from weeks 1-6 are available here, and the link below includes the winter squash dishes bloggers shared between weeks 7-12. I have also created a page of winter squash recipes I have made over the life of Love & Flour.
To close, I will leave you with a quote from Barbara Kingsolver, author of Animal, Vegetable, Miracle:
“Concentrating on local foods means thinking of fruit invariably as the product of an orchard, and winter squash as the fruit of an early-winter farm. It’s a strategy that will keep grocery money in the neighborhood, where it gets recycled into your own school system and local businesses. The green spaces surrounding your town stay green, and farmers who live nearby get to grow more food next year, for you.”
Butternut Chicken Stew
- 2 tablespoons peanut oil
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
- 4 garlic cloves (2 teaspoons minced garlic)
- 1 large white or yellow onion, finely chopped
- 2 large carrots, finely chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, chopped
- 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and minced
- 2 pounds butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and chopped
- 1/4 cup tomato paste
- 1/4 cup peanut butter
- 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
- 1 cup beer (I used Yuengling Lager)
- 1 cup chicken stock
- 1/4 cup honey
- 3 tablespoons cider vinegar
- 1 rotisserie chicken
- Optional: chopped peanuts for garnish
- Heat the peanut oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
- Add the salt, pepper, ginger, red pepper flakes, and garlic and cook for two or three minutes until fragrant.
- Next, add the onion, carrots, red pepper, jalapeno pepper, and butternut squash to the pot and saute until the vegetables begin to soften, about five minutes.
- Now stir in the tomato paste, peanut butter, dijon mustard, beer, chicken stock, honey, and vinegar.
- Bring to a boil, cover and then reduce to a simmer until the squash is tender, about 30 minutes.
- Shred the rotisserie chicken and stir it in before serving.
- If desired, season with additional salt and pepper to taste and top with chopped peanuts.
If you prefer to cook your own chicken rather than purchase one cooked on a rotisserie, place two-three pounds of skinless, bone-in thighs and one cup of beer or stock in the slow cooker over low heat for four hours. When tender, allow the chicken to cool, shred it, and add it to the stew.Please use the measurements in this recipe as a rough guide. For instance, if you want to use three carrots instead of two, by all means do so. If you do not want to use beer, simply add an extra cup of chicken stock to take its place. A light to medium body beer will work best here. A stout or porter will be too dark. An ale or lager should be just right. I used a Yuengling Lager simply because it was the lightest beer lingering in my fridge.For the garnish seen here, I added a dollop of Greek yogurt in addition to peanuts.
Click here to view other recipes from 12 Weeks of Winter Squash bloggers.