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Harvest Pork Stew with Pumpkin

from Braises and Stews by Tori Ritchie
Harvest Pork Stew with Pumpkin

2 pounds pork stew (from shoulder), trimmed of excess fat
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons paprika
Kosher salt
Freshly ground pepper
Vegetable oil
1 yellow onion, thinly sliced
1 can (14 1/2 ounces) chopped tomatoes
1 bay leaf
1 small pumpkin (about 2 pounds) or butternut squash
1 cup frozen, thawed lima beans or edamame
1 cup fresh or frozen, thawed corn kernels
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

Serves 6

This and many other wonderful recipes may be found in Tori Ritchie's
Braises and Stews
from Chronicle Books


Friends of mine in Chicago make big pots of this on fall nights, the red, green, and golden colors of the food matching the trees outside. Use a baking pumpkin-such as Sugar Pie-but not a jack-o'-lantern, which has watery flesh. Or substitute butternut squash (which can often be found precut in produce sections; you'll need about 1 pound in that form).

Cut the meat into 2-inch pieces and pat dry with paper towels (do not rinse). Spread meat on a large piece of waxed paper or the butcher paper it came in. In a small bowl, combine the flour, paprika, a generous pinch of salt, and several grindings of pepper. Sprinkle flour mixture over meat, toss to coat, then shake meat in a colander to rid it of excess flour; do in batches if the colander is small.

Coat the bottom of a 5-to 7-quart Dutch oven with a thin film of the oil and set pot over medium-high heat. When oil shimmers, add enough meat to cover bottom in 1 layer. Cook, without stirring, until meat lifts easily from pot with tongs and is well browned on bottom, about 5 minutes. Turn and brown on the other side, about 5 minutes more. Transfer meat to a plate and continue with remaining meat, adding more oil to pot in between batches as needed.

When last batch of meat has been removed, add the onion and 1/2 cup water to pot, stirring to release browned bits. Cook, stirring often, until onion is softened and liquid is almost evaporated, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes, 1 cup water, and bay leaf and let come to a boil. Return meat and any accumulated juices to pot. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, with a large, heavy knife, cut the pumpkin in half through stem end. Scoop out and discard seeds and strings. Cut pumpkin into chunks, then with a small, sharp knife, pare off the peel. Cut flesh into 1-inch cubes.

After meat has cooked 1 hour, add pumpkin to pot. Let liquid come to a boil, then reduce heat, cover, and simmer 30 minutes more. Stir the lima beans and corn into pot, then cover and simmer until vegetables are cooked and meat is very tender, about 10 minutes more. Stir in the vinegar. Turn off heat and let stand 5 to 10 minutes before serving, to settle flavors.

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