With its deep green color and elaborately ruffled leaves, kale is contrasted with yellow squash and bright orange sweet potato in a fantastic fall dish. Kale and sweet potato stew is a nourishing dish for the fall harvest with plenty of eye appeal.
As everyone knows, greens are good for you, and kale is a standout. It’s a wonderful complement to sweet potato whenever these two vegetables are paired. Yellow squash adds a bit of sunshiny color to the mix.
Serving ideas: Though this stew can stand on its own, a hot cooked grain makes it even more substantial. Choose from any of these cooked grains, served hot: Brown rice, quinoa, farro, or couscous. Or, serve with a crusty bread. A simple salad or slaw is always a welcome addition. Or you can go straight to dessert! How about another fall classic —Apple or Pear Crumble.
Wild about Greens
Everyone’s wild for greens these days, and it’s no wonder. Greens like kale are recognized as the most nutrient-rich group of veggies, with a multitude of benefits. The hardier greens like kale, which include chard and collards, are superb sources of highly absorbable calcium, a perk that’s especially valuable in plant-based diets.
- Greens are one of the best sources of Vitamin K, essential to bone health. And, they’re abundant in vitamins A, B (especially folic acid), and C.
- Greens also provide a wealth of antioxidants and chlorophyll. They’re also considered anti-inflammatory. All of these are great reasons to eat more greens, in addition to their being tasty, versatile, and adding interest to all kinds of dishes.
Recipe adapted from Vegan Soups and Hearty Stews for All Seasons by Nava Atlas. Photos by Hannah Kaminsky, BittersweetBlog.com.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 medium-large red onion, chopped
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 to 8 ounces kale (curly or lacinato)
- 2 large or 3 medium sweet potatoes, peeled and diced
- 4 cups water with 2 vegetable bouillon cubes, or one 32-ounce carton vegetable broth
- 1 teaspoon grated fresh or squeeze-bottle ginger
- 1 teaspoon ground cumin
- 1 medium or 2 small yellow summer squashes, diced
- 2 medium ripe tomatoes, diced
- 1/4 cup chopped parsley or cilantro
- 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar, or to taste
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Hot cooked grain (rice, quinoa, farro, couscous, etc.) for serving, optional
- Heat the oil in a soup pot. Add the onion and sauté over medium-low heat until translucent. Add the garlic and continue to sauté until both are golden.
- Add the sweet potatoes and water with bouillon cubes to the soup pot. Add the ginger and cumin and stir well. Bring to a slow boil, then lower the heat. Cover and simmer gently for about 10 minutes.
- Trim away and discard the thick midribs from the kale leaves. Chop the kale into bite-sized pieces and rinse well.
- Stir the kale, squash, and tomatoes into the soup pot. Simmer until all the vegetables are tender, about 15 minutes. Mash a small amount of sweet potato with the back of a wooden spoon so that it thickens the base. The stew should remain thick, but if need be, loosen the consistency with a cup or so of water.
- Season with balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper. If time allows, let the stew stand off the heat for an hour or two. Heat through before serving.
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