Purple Peru Stew

Purple potatoes? Yup. Popular in Peru. This beef stew serves 4 plus leftovers. Brown 3 lbs. chuck stew meat in a little olive oil in a large stock pot. Brown in stages and remove meat to a bowl. Saute one chopped onion and one sliced leek in the pot until brown, deglaze with 1/2 cup red wine vinegar. Add the beef back in. Stir in 1 tsp. cumin, 1 tsp. coriander, 1/2 tsp. cinnamon, 1/2 tsp. cayenne, 1 tsp. garlic powder, ground black pepper, salt to taste. Add 2 small thinly sliced aji amarillo or other hot peppers. Check for heat, adjust accordingly. Simmer for 1 hour.

While meat is simmering, par-boil 6 peeled purple potatoes. Cool. Cut into 1″ chunks. Add potatoes, 3 sliced carrots, 1 sliced parsnip, another sliced leek. Add a little chicken or vegetable broth if getting dry. Stir and simmer another hour. Warm up for dinner later, or cool and refrigerate. Better the next day. In summer, add fresh corn kernels.

I totally made this recipe up, so don’t blame anybody from Peru.


Chicken Bones

In my quest for new recipes, I’m testing all the time. Boneless, skinless chicken breasts are tough. Literally. It’s near impossible to cook them through while keeping the texture moist. When I substituted boneless skinless breasts for skin-on, bone-in recently, it didn’t work. Result was dry stringy chicken.

If you have a recipe that keeps the boneless, skinless breasts moist, let us know. Burmese Chicken on Meat Street page works pretty well, but it’s a slower braise. Bone-in is better, if you can put up with picking them out.

And, personally, I love crispy skin.


What’s in Your Cupboard?

Check out ‘Carol’s Cupboard’ page for what I have in my pantry. Sauces, spices, basic everyday ingredients. Must-haves for me. What’s in your cupboard?

We are lucky to have great neighborhood markets, so shop often for fish, meat, produce. Atkins Farm market in South Amherst has great butchers, produce, specialty foods, deli. North Shore fish and seafood store in Northampton brings in fresh catches from the coastal wharves twice weekly. Frigo’s Italian market in Springfield has veal, formaggi, prepared classics.

Local farm stands and farmers’ markets are seasonal staples. Hadley “grass” asparagus, red leaf, Boston lettuces, corn, tomatoes, peppers, onions, potatoes are all native to our fertile Connecticut River Valley.

Food · Recipes · Vegetarian Recipes

New Home

Welcome to Recipe Detours Blog! It began as a culinary path on my blog TheSideTrek. The page got full, so now it has a new home of its own.

‘Detours’ are not precise recipes. They are for cooks who like the art of cuisine, not the science. Various ingredient options, general methodologies. Most are creations from my particular preferences and palate. Use them as avenues to make them your own. –Carol Colitti Levine

Meat Street– Braise. Roast. Grill.
Surf Side- Seafood. Fish.
Via Veggie– Suppers. Salads. Sides.
Waffle Way– Brunch. And such.

Carol’s Cupboard– Ingredients, sauces, spices always in my pantry.

What’s in your fridge?