TOMATO AND SWEET CORN SAFFRON STEW

 TOMATO AND SWEET CORN SAFFRON STEW

with sweet red roasted peppers, herbs and spice. Topped with dill avocado cream!

Makes 8-1/2 cups

1/4 c. margarine, regular or trans fat-free

1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil

15 oz. can whole kernel yellow corn, with liquid

15 oz. can whole kernel white corn, with liquid

28 oz. can diced tomatoes, with liquid

15 oz. can stewed tomatoes, with liquid; cut large pieces into smaller pieces if you buy the brands with slices rather than chunks

6 oz. can tomato paste

1/4 c. real maple syrup (Grade A amber)

1 c. diced sweet red roasted peppers (1/2 inch squares)

1 T. firmly packed, peeled, finely chopped fresh garlic

1 T. mild curry powder

1 T. sweet paprika

1 T. dried tarragon, crushed

1 T. dried oregano, crushed

2-3 pinches saffron (pistils), or to taste

1/4 t. ground allspice

1 t. salt plus to taste

freshly ground black pepper to taste

4 lg. fresh Roma tomatoes, cored and diced into 1/2 inch cubes

1 ripe Hass avocado, pitted, peeled and cut into chunks

1/2 c. soy sour cream

1 t. white vinegar

1/2 t. dried dill weed

1 garlic clove, peeled and coarsely cut

1/4 t. salt

In large saucepan combine first 18 ingredients, up to and including black pepper to taste. Stir well and cook, uncovered, over medium heat till bubbly. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Add fresh-cut tomatoes, stir well, adjust for salt, then turn off heat.

In blender container combine avocado, soy sour cream, vinegar, dill weed, garlic and salt. Blend on low speed till mixed, then on medium speed till creamy. Transfer to small bowl, cover and refrigerate till ready to serve.

When ready to serve, reheat stew till very hot. Ladle into soup bowls and top each with a dollop of dill avocado cream and serve at once. 

Notes: This is about tomatoes: canned, stewed, fresh, paste–and making all the flavors and textures taste great with the herbs and spices that know exactly how to do that! This deliciously fragrant stew serves well alone, but if you want to extend it, serve over elbow macaroni, capellini pasta, white rice or mashed potatoes–in soup bowls.

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