SQUASH, SWEETCORN AND BEAN SOUP
'"Squash, sweetcorn and beans form a kind of holy trinity in the cooking of
central America. The combination is uniquely satisfying and packed with
PREPARATION 20 MINUTES
COOKING ABOUT 40 MINUTES
200g/7oz dried black beans, soaked overnight
1 tbsp paprika
2 red onions, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
450g/1Ib peeled and deseeded squash or pumpkin (about 1.5kg/3Ib unpeeled),
into 2.5cm/1in cubes
400g/14oz can of chopped tomatoes
750ml/1pint 7 fl oz vegetable stock
225g/8oz frozen sweetcorn kernels or the kernels from 2 large ears of corn
6 tbsp chopped fresh coriander, optional
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 Rinse the black beans then put into a pan with fresh cold water. Bring to
boil, and boil rapidly for 10 minutes, then cover and simmer for 30 minutes
until tender. Drain well and set aside. Gently heat a little of the stock
with the paprika in
a large saucepan. Add the onions, cover and cook over medium - to - low
for 10 minutes.
2 Add the garlic, the squash, the tomatoes with their liquid and 150ml/1/4
pint of the stock. Bring to the boil, then simmer gently with the lid
askew for 10 - 20 minutes, until the squash is just tender. The cooking
will depend on the variety, if it is watery, it will soften up quite soon.
3 Puree 3 - 4 ladlefuls of the soup in a food processor, then return this
the soup remaining in the pan and cook for 5 minutes more.
4 When the squash is reasonably soft, add the beans and pour in the
stock. Season generously with salt and pepper and simmer for 15 minutes (if
using fresh beans er I don't think they're in recipe list). Add the corn
coriander (if using), and cook for another 5 minutes, until the corn is
Ladle into bowls.
Adapted from November 1998 Good Food Magazine
Buying and storing squash - look for hard, heavy fruits with no blemishes;
skin, however, is fine. Provided the skin is undamaged, whole fruits can be
stored for several months in a frost-free, cool place.
Preparation and cooking- removing the tough skin is laborious but necessary
fruits that are destined for a stir-fry, soup or casserole. If you are
or roasting large segments, however, the skin can be left in place until
cooking when it is more easily removed. Pumpkins can be
used in much the same way as other types of squash. Remember though the
tends to be watery and disintegrates easily, so cooking methods should be
chosen to compensate for this.
Nutrition - like most orange-fleshed vegetables, winter squash and pumpkins
contain high levels of carotenes. An average-sized serving of pumpkin
just over the recommended daily requirement, while a chunk of butternut
provides four times that. Both contain small but useful amounts of vitamin
potassium, magnesium, iron, vitamin B6, vitamin E and folate."