Sancocho (Columbian Potato Stew)

Another great hearty winter stew from a post last year. I updated instructions and ingredients to hopefully make it easier to understand.

In the late nineties I was dating a man from NYC he was tall, dark, handsome and from Colombia. His sister, who he lived with in a beautiful house in White Plains, was an excellent cook and when I would visit she would teach me something new each time.

One of my favorite dishes that she taught me how to make was sancocho. I have made this dish for lots of people and every one of them loved it. I even adapted it into a vegan recipe and it sold very well in my deli.

I really think you will like it. If you like Latin food and are not afraid to try something new it’s worth the effort. The recipe below is just one version I actually found many versions online, so if you like it try a few different variations and see which one is your favorite. Again, I love feedback so let me know what you think and how it went.

1 lg sweet onion chopped

1 lb. grass fed stew meat or chuck roast cut into chunks

4 cloves garlic minced

4 potatoes coarsely chopped

2 sweet potatoes coarsely chopped

2 carrots sliced into chunks

1 plantain sliced

2 cups Yucca chopped (if you can’t find it just eliminate it or add chiote squash)

1 cup frozen peas

2 small cans stewed tomatoes

Equal parts water to tomatoes

2 tsp oregano

2 tsp sea salt

2 pkgs sazon (I have not found a natural substitute for this, so I use it even though it may not be the best thing for us it’s not horrible to use once in a while)

2 TB sofrito this link gives you a simple recipe for it but I have found natural versions of this premade. In fact, “Chosen Foods” is one brand that has some really great natural condiments that you can use in your Latin recipes)

In a large pot heat 2 TB avocado oil add the stew meat, garlic, and onions and sauté until onions start to sweat and meat is browned on all sides. Add potatoes, carrots, plantain, tomatoes, water and last 3 ingredients. Bring to a boil then reduce heat and simmer several hours. Simmering Will allow the flavors to develop without overcooking the vegetables. If you boil a soup or stew for too long it will turn the vegetables to mush and the flavors will not develop as fully.
Add Yucca and peas and simmer until these are just tender about 20 minutes or so.  Add additional salt if needed and serve with tortillas or rice.

Some people like to add corn on the cob to this dish I think that makes it more Dominican. Also people from Colombia serve it with arepas. Arepas are a kind of flat cornmeal fritter made with white masa and queso chojito or cream cheese that is very good. How ever you do it make sure to

Enjoy!

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