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This recipe combines some of the most iconic tastes of fall--butternut and acorn squash, sweet potato, apple--in a sweet and savory pot of deliciousness. I recommend serving with a dollop of sour cream. And cornbread. All amounts for seasonings are estimates--I tend to season as I go and according to taste; I have a feeling these are underestimates. I will be sure to update the next time I make this with adjusted amounts. I used a smoked (pre-cooked) ham steak for this; I have also made it with other kinds of ham, with turkey sausage, and without meat altogether with positive results.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 lb ham steak, cubed
- 1⁄2 head purple cabbage, chopped
- 1 large sweet onion, chopped
- 2 medium sweet potatoes, cubed
- 1 cup apple juice, divided
- 6 tablespoons brown sugar, divided
- 4 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 1 acorn squash, peeled and cubed
- 1 -2 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon italian seasoning
- 1 teaspoon chili powder
- 1⁄2 teaspoon ground sage
- 1⁄2 teaspoon steak seasoning (McCormick Montreal Steak seasoning)
- 1⁄2 teaspoon garlic salt
- 1 apple (any sweet variety, preferably red)
- 1⁄3 cup cilantro, chopped
- 1 (15 ounce) can garbanzo beans
- 32 ounces chicken stock
- salt, to taste
- Be sure to prepare your ingredients ahead of time: cube or chop everything to about the same size--around 1/2 inch or so. First chop the cilantro and cube the apple and set it aside (in the fridge). Peel and cube the sweet potatoes; then the butternut squash, and acorn squash, and set these aside. Chop the cabbage and onion and set these aside. Now cube the ham steak. I like this order because then I don't have to wash the cutting board after prepping the ham, and because I can then add the ingredients to the pot in the reverse order that I chopped them. So:.
- After completing your prep, heat the olive oil in a deep stew pot. When hot, add the cubed ham.
- Once the ham begins to turn golden, add the cabbage and onion. Place the top on this for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, to let the cabbage "steam" a bit.
- Add the sweet potatoes and half the amounts of apple juice, brown sugar, and butter. Stir to deglaze and combine, then replace the lid for another 5 minutes.
- Add the butternut and acorn squash and the reserved second halves of the apple juice, sugar, and butter. Then Add the lemon juice, Italian seasoning, chili powder, sage, steak seasoning, and garlic salt. Stir, and reseal for about 10 minutes, or until the squash is tender.
- Add the apple and cilantro, and the garbanzo beans. Stir to combine. Then add the chicken stock to cover--I normally use the entire 32 oz. Re-cover and bring to a simmer.
- Adjust salt, sugar, and other seasonings to taste, then enjoy.