Saturday, December 7, 2019

Fantastical Feasts: Cinderella Stew.

Fairy Tale Geek: [Collapses onto sofa, sponge and cleaning solution still in hand]
“Why do I leave cleaning to the last minute?  And why don’t I break it up into smaller tasks so I don’t have to do it all at once.  I mean, I’ve been cleaning the Enchanted Condo since this morning and it’s, well, it’s well past five PM now.  I suppose it could be worse.  I could be doing it for an abusive step-family like our old friend Cinderella had to.  Also, I could be doing it without dinner ready.   Luckily I had a little time last night and a little time this morning, so I set up the slow cooker to make some Cinderella Stew.

What’s Cinderella Stew?  Well, I’m glad you asked.  This recipe I came across almost by accident in the cookbook Easy Everyday Slow Cooker Recipes by Donna-Marie Pye.  Don’t believe me?  Here’s the actual page:
I’ll give you a paraphrase of the recipe, but you might want to look for the book itself (technically this could be considered copyright infringement.  Luckily, my blog has a small audience and makes no money.  So, It’d be a waste of a lawsuit).”

2 onions, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
¼ cup all purpose flour
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp ground black pepper
3 lbs boneless pork shoulder, trimmed and cut into 1 inch cubes
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp butter
1 19 oz (or close approximate) can of tomatoes, with juice
1 sweet potato, chopped
1 tart apple (like Granny Smith), chopped
3 tbsp dried currants
½ tsp pumpkin pie spice
¼ tsp ground cumin
1 bay leaf
1 ½ cup plain yogurt
½ cup chopped green onions

1)      Layer onions and garlic in slow cooker stoneware.

2)      In a gallon zip-top bag, combine flour, salt and pepper.  In batches, add cubed pork and toss to coat.  Discard extra flour mixture.

3)      In a large skillet, heat half the oil and the butter over medium-high heat.  Cook the pork in batches, adding more oil as it’s needed.  Once the pork is all browned, add it to the stoneware.

4)      Stir in sweet potato, apple, currants, tomatoes with juice, pumpkin pie spice, cumin and bay leaf.

5)      Cover and cook in slow cooker on Low for 8 to 10 hours.  Discard bay leaf
6)      Serve with yogurt and green onions as garnish (or not, if you'd rather).

“Now, this dish can be assembled twelve hours in advance.  So, I usually do all the prep the night before and then stash it in the refrigerator until the next morning when I start cooking it.  As for why it’s called Cinderella Stew, I’m not sure.  I kind of think it’s because the combination of the sweet potato and the pumpkin pie spice might give it a vaguely pumpkin pie-esque flavor.  But that flavor doesn’t stand out that strongly against everything else.  Besides, Cinderella’s coach was made from a pumpkin, not a pumpkin pie.  And there’s certainly a difference.  Hold on a second.

[Gets up, walks to kitchen and serves self some stew.  Walks back to sofa and sits down with bowl of stew]

I know that the requisite reward at the end of a Cinderella story is a charming prince and a life of ease away from toxic family members.  But a decent bowl of stew isn’t a bad reward either.
[eats a spoonful]
See you next time.”

1 comment:

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