[You’ll adore this subtly spiced, nourishing Sustenance Stew from The Perfect Blend. With its cauliflower rice accompaniment, it’s vegan, sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free, yeast-free and low glycemic. Suitable for all stages on an anti-candida diet.]
Apparently, Canadians like to complain about the weather. Well, if your town was the subject of a riddle that went like this (and that was actually TRUE), what would you do?
The Question: What is the only place in North America where you need a parka in the morning, the air conditioner in the afternoon, and earmuffs in the evening?
Yep, you got it: Toronto. (Okay, so the ear muffs might not be necessary for everyone. I just happen to have very sensitive ears. My husband says it’s one of my many “dog-like qualities.”).
When we’re in the throes of winter here in The Six, it’s -23C (-10F) outside and there’s not even the temporary reprieve of air conditioning midday, all you really want to do is don your flannel PJs, curl up in a tight little ball with fuzzy slippers on your feet, a crocheted blanket draped over your shoulders, a roaring fireplace in front of you. . . and a bowl of hearty, fragrant, comforting stew on your lap to help ease the pain of Mother Nature’s inexplicable punishment.
I can’t think of a better candidate for that stew than this Sustenance Stew from my friend Tess’s latest cookbook!
[Photo credit: Anson Smart]
In case you’ve been living in a deserted town in Tasmania somewhere, you already know Tess (oh, wait, that won’t work–she’s even more famous Down Under!). Tess Masters, aka The Blender Girl, is the author of three cookbooks, a smoothies app and a gorgeous blog, among other things. She’s also the face of numerous food and lifestyle brands and an expert on all things blender, raw, alkalizing and natural health-oriented.
Tess’s latest tome, The Perfect Blend, is organized by the recipes’ function, whether to increase energy, boost immunity, detox, provide protein, aid in weight loss, decrease inflammation, furnish healthy fats, nourish with low carbs, alkalize the body, promote probiotics, follow proper food combining or feed the soul–it’s all there!
This recipe for Sustenance Stew comes from the chapter on alkaline-forming foods, and it’s a perfect example of how “healthful” can also be delectable.
Apart from its comfort-food characteristics, the rich and subtly spiced sauce and inclusion of sweet potato (huge fan over here), the stew also enlists an accompaniment of cauliflower “rice” (which I’ve been playing with and loving lately). This is a truly winning combination of ingredients, textures and flavors–one that will have you coming back for seconds.
Big steaming bowls of this stew got the HH and me through some pretty cold and dreary nights last week. I can’t wait to have it again when the weather brightens–it will be a perfect reflection of my mood this spring.
I also can’t wait to try the Nosh-on-‘Em Nachos, Carrot Cake Crush, Can’t Beet This Dip, Gentle Lentils with Basil Is The Bomb Sauce, Kale! Caesar, Sweet Potato and Macadamia Magic, Pineapple Cucumber Gazpacho, Sexy Celeriac Slaw with Lime & Poppy Seeds, Avocado Avenger, Detox Chocs, Mock Tuna Swooner, Baked Spinach and Artichoke Dip, Punched-Up Potato and Leek Soup, and so many more!
If you’re looking for more whole-foods recipes with innovative and delicious flavor combinations, be sure to grab a copy of Tess’s The Perfect Blend.
Reprinted with permission from The Perfect Blend, ©2016 Tess Masters. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.
Tess says: “I’m a sucker for stew, and this one is seriously delicious and so quick and easy. The combination of rich, creamy almond butter, sautéed sweet potatoes, and spices will make you mmmm your delight at every bite. This hearty dish, loaded with protein (the optional greens and seeds add even more), is an alkalizing, immune-boosting, chlorophyll-rich crusader.”
For the Cauliflower Rice:
2 medium heads cauliflower, cut into florets
1/4 cup (60ml) extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon (5 ml) natural salt, plus more to taste
For the Stew:
1 tablespoon (15 ml) grapeseed oil or extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped
2 teaspoons (10 ml) minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
3 cups (720ml) vegetable broth
2 (14.5-ounce/411g) cans whole tomatoes with their juice
1½ tablespoons (22.5 ml) minced fresh ginger
1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) red pepper flakes
4 cups (570g) peeled and roughly diced orange-flesh sweet potatoes
3 cups (210g) chopped broccoli florets
4 cups (120g) Swiss chard, stalks removed, leaves cut into ribbons (about 1 large bunch)
1/3 cup (43g) roasted almond butter
1/2 cup (14g) loosely packed finely chopped cilantro
1 medium avocado, pitted, peeled, and sliced
1/2 cup (80g) sliced raw almonds [I used pumpkin seeds since I ran out of almonds!]
For the optional boosters:
1/4 cup (35g) shelled hemp seeds
1 tablespoon (15 ml) chia seeds (black or white)
1/4 cup (10g) pea greens
To make the cauliflower rice, preheat the oven to 375°F (180°C). Line a large baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment paper.
Put the cauliflower florets in a food processor and pulse about 5 times, until the cauliflower has the texture of couscous. You may have to process in two batches. Transfer the cauliflower to a large bowl and stir in the oil and 1 teaspoon of salt until well combined.
Transfer the “rice” to the prepared baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Stir with a spatula or wooden spoon and continue to roast for another 15 minutes, until the “rice” begins to brown. Set aside until ready to serve.
To make the stew, in a large pot over medium heat, warm the oil and sauté the onion and garlic with a pinch of salt for about 5 minutes, until the onion is soft and translucent.
Meanwhile, add the broth, tomatoes, ginger, and red pepper flakes to your blender and pulse a few times on low until rustically chopped and combined but not blended. Stir the sweet potatoes and broth mixture into the sautéed onion. Increase the heat to high and bring the mixture to a boil. Lower the heat to medium, add 1/2 teaspoon of salt, and simmer, uncovered and stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes, until the sweet potato is just tender.
Add the broccoli and simmer for another 5 minutes. Stir in the chard and almond butter and simmer for another 5 minutes, until the chard is just wilted. The broth should be absorbed and you should have a creamy vegetable dish. Stir in the cilantro and tweak the salt to taste.
To serve, spoon equal amounts of the cauliflower rice into bowls and spoon the stew next to or over the “rice.” Top with the avocado and sliced almonds and sprinkle with the hemp seed and chia seed boosters. Finish by topping with the pea greens booster. Makes 6-8 servings.
Nutritional facts (per serving, based on 6 servings): calories 126 kcal | fat 9.6 g | saturated fat 1.4 g | sodium 324.8 mg | carbs 8.8 g | fiber 2.8 g | sugars 4 g | protein 3.6 g | calcium 68.6 mg | iron 1.8 mg
Suitable for: ACD All stages; refined sugar-free, gluten-free, grain-free, dairy-free, egg free, soy-free, yeast-free, vegan, low glycemic.
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