Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Spicy Stew Stuffed in a Pumpkin along with The Rifles and Lissie

With the unseasonably warm weather we have been having in Florida it should be no surprise to anyone that the pumpkin crop did not produce as early as it normally does. This caused some to go on a four hour long adventure to find a pumpkin patch (hello Eliza). Eventually the patch was found but the pumpkin purchased was not local, it had been shipped from Ohio. I patiently waited and patches have sprung up everywhere. I guess the lesson to be learned is that the early bird doesn't always get the worm, sometimes it gets an imported pumpkin. My recipe of the week:

Spicy Fall Stew Baked in a Pumpkin (adapted from Veg Times, Oct. 2008)
(printable version)

-3 Tbs. Olive Oil
-1 onion, diced
-2 bell peppers, diced
-3 garlic cloves, minced
-1 tsp. ancho chili powder
-1 tsp. ground cumin
-1 lb. tomatillos, husked and quartered
-1 can of hominy
-2 baking pumpkins
-4 oz pepper jack cheese

1. Heat 1 Tbs. of the oil in a pot. Saute onion, bell pepper and garlic until softened. Stir in chili powder and cumin and cook an additional two minutes.

2. Add tomatillos, hominy, and 1/2 cup of water. Cover the pot and bring to a boil. Simmer, covered partially, until tomatillos are softened (about 12 minutes). Uncover and cook an additional few minutes to thicken the stew if desired.

3. Cut the top off the pumpkins and scoop out the insides. Coat the inside of each pumpkin with a Tbs of oil. Line the bottom of each pumpkin with 1 oz of cheese.

4. Fill each pumpkin with stew. Top with remaining cheese (1 oz per pumpkin) and place the lid of the pumpkin back on it. Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake for an hour and a half (or until flesh of the pumpkin is tender). Remove from oven and let stand.

Vegetarian Times suggests using red kuri, sugar pie, cheese or kabocha pumpkins. If you have access to these, lucky you.

I've tried to ignore Lissie Maurus. Her pop sound is too sweet, too straightforward for my taste. Yet, the more I turn away, the more they seem to capture. Her new EP, Why you runnin', will be available to the public on November 10th. "Little Lovin'" comes from that EP. Thanks to My Old Kentucky Blog for reluctantly turning me on to her.

A song (and a video) that is really great for disemboweling a pumpkin is The Rifles "The Great Escape." Being a bike rider I enjoy how the whole video follows a boy bmxing his way across a large grassy field. I also feel a special connection when about halfway through the video the television is busted out by a pole. My brother and I tried to do that once, with a baseball bat. We only succeeded in bruising our hands. "The Great Escape" comes from the album by the same name. Purchase it here.