Wholly Posole?

Who doesn’t love posole in the wintertime?  Technically posole is Spanish for hominy. Practically speaking it is the common name for a Mexican soup made with pork or chicken, broth and spices including chile. It is comfort food with a kick!

But what if you are vegetarian or vegan? Chile water and hominy doesn’t quite cut it. I came a cross a recipe using butternut squash and hominy in a spicy broth (either chicken broth or vegetable broth) that I wanted to try and, if was good, recommend it to my chile-loving vegetarian daughter. I have to say that even a carnivore like me really enjoyed it and I had two big bowls of the experimental batch.

Butternut Squash Posole with traditional garnishes of shredded cabbage, radishes and sliced avocado. There were warm tortillas on the side.

BUTTERNUT SQUASH POSOLE

4 servings – 45 minutes

INGREDIENTS

¼ cup canola oil

About 1 qt. butternut squash cubes (1.75 lbs)

1/2 cup diced onion

¾ cup kosher salt

2 Tbsp tomato paste

1 Tbsp each finely chopped garlic and chili seasoning powder

l-1/2tsp ground cumin

½ tsp. dried oregano

1 qt. reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable broth

1 can(25.0z) hominy, drained and rinsed

½ cup finely shredded green cabbage

1 lime, cut into wedges

1 avocado, peeled and thinly sliced

1 or 3 radishes, thinly sliced

warm corn tortillas.

METHOD

  1. Heat oil over medium-high heat in a large, heavy-bottomed pot. Add squash, onion and ¾ tsp. salt. Cook, stirring occasionally until vegetables begin to soften, 7 t0 8 minutes. Add tomato paste, garlic, chili seasoning, cumin and oregano and cook 1 minute, stirring often.

Add broth and hominy and bring to a simmer. Simmer uncovered, until squash is tender, 12 to 15 minutes. Season to taste with salt.

  1. Spoon into bowls and serve with cabbage, lime, avocado, radishes and a basket of warm tortillas.

This is a simple recipe if you do you prep by grouping things that go together ahead of times – seasonings all together, things that can need to be cooked all together and garnishes all together. Don’t let the seemingly long list of ingredients intimidate you.

CONFESSIONS

I am vegetarian friendly, but not a vegetarian.  I used low-sodum chicken broth because I keep it in my pantry. I put butter on the warm tortillas because i like them that way.

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