Bean and Beet Stew: Another Use for Sweet Potatoes

Those sweet potatoes just keep coming and coming. This week I used some in an adaptation of Ukrainian Bean and Beet stew. This is a recipe from one of the Moosewood Cookbooks: Low Fat Favorites. My copy of it wore out long ago, but I kept several pages, including the one with the bean and beet stew recipe. Here’s one place you can see the recipe on line.

The basic idea is a vegetarian borscht. In keeping with the theme of cooking with what I have on hand, I varied the recipe by substituting sweet potatoes for the white potatoes, and also skipped the celery. That’s one vegetable that never appears in my CSA basket. I also used fennel seed in place of the caraway seed, just for fun.

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Here’s the stew boiling away on the stove.

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Here’s the broth I made with the beet and sweet potato peels.

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Ready for the table.

The stew came out pretty good although probably bearing little resemblance to anything actually eaten in Ukraine. The combination of sweet potatoes, beets, and fennel lent it a certain vegetable sweetness.

Local Analysis

Local:

onions, cabbage, carrots, beets, sweet potatoes — from the CSA

vegetable broth — homemade from the peels of the beets and sweet potatoes

Nonlocal:

canned tomatoes, kidney beans, salt, fennel seed

I might look into growing fennel next summer.

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