Spicy spooky stew and ghoulish toasts
by Sarah Randell
This warming stew is perfect for a Halloween party, or any chilly evening. The sweet potato makes it a meal in itself, but you could also serve it with these Ghoulish toasts.
- FOR THE SPOOKY STEW:
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 2kg boneless pork shoulder joint, excess fat removed and meat cut into 4cm cubes
- 2 onions, chopped
- 2 red chillies, deseeded and sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, sliced
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 4 tbsp Cajun seasoning
- 200ml white wine
- 600ml chicken stock
- 2 x 390g cartons chopped tomatoes
- 1 tsp light brown soft sugar
- 900g sweet potato, peeled and cut into 2.5cm cubes
- 2 x 175g packs baby sweetcorn, sliced into 2cm long pieces
- FOR THE GHOULISH TOASTS:
- 16 slices of baguette
- 500g frozen petit pois
- ½ x 31g pack coriander, roughly chopped
- 4 tbsp full-fat cream cheese
- TO MAKE THE STEW:
- Preheat the oven to 180°C, fan 160°C, gas 4.
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a heavy-based flame- and ovenproof casserole.
- Add the pork cubes and cook for 5 minutes until browned. You may need to do this in batches, adding another tablespoon of oil. Transfer the pork to a plate and set aside.
- Add the remaining oil and the onions to the pan. Cook for 5-8 minutes, then stir in the chillies and garlic. Cook for a further 3-4 minutes until starting to soften and brown.
- Return the pork to the pan and sprinkle over the flour and Cajun seasoning. Cook for 1 minute, then add the white wine and let it bubble for 30 seconds. Gradually stir in the chicken stock.
- Add the chopped tomatoes, sugar and some seasoning. Bring to the boil, then cover with a lid and cook in the oven for 1 hour.
- Remove from the oven and add the sweet potato. Return to the oven for 30 minutes.
- Remove the stew from the oven and stir in the sweetcorn. Return to the oven for a final 15 minutes until the pork and vegetables are tender.
- Check the seasoning, then serve.
- TO MAKE THE TOASTS:
- Preheat a griddle pan or the grill to high. Toast the baguette slices under the grill or griddle them until toasted on each side.
- Put the petit pois in a pan of boiling water and simmer for 3 minutes until cooked. Drain and whiz with the coriander and cream cheese in a food processor or using a stick blender to a coarse paste. Spread on the toasted baguette slices to serve.
The stew freezes well. Defrost it thoroughly, then reheat until piping hot.
The pea mixture also makes a nice dip