Colombian Chicken Stew: Sancocho

Quote: "It shouts out loud: I really care for you!" I lived in Colombia, South America, and Sancocho is the ultimate in comfort food there[! And like in Italian homes, each family has their own version of lasagna; this is my personalized version of the soup. It is believed that it is so powerful that it can bring the dead back to life. That is why it is served after every party and makes the perfect Sunday meal!]

Yield:
6 to 8 servings
Level:
Easy
Ingredients
  • 7 cloves garlic
  • 3 medium carrots, chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, cored, seeded, and chopped
  • 1 small Spanish onion, chopped
  • 1 habenero chile, chopped
  • 2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
  • 1 gallon water
  • 3 low-sodium chicken bouillon cubes
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 (3 to 4-pound) chicken, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1 small yucca, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 1 green plantain, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 5 all-purpose potatoes, halved
  • 2 ripe plantains, peeled and cut into 3-inch pieces
  • 4 ears corn, cut in 3 pieces
Directions

In a blender, puree the garlic, carrots, peppers, onion, chile, and 1 cup cilantro.

In a large pot, combine the puree with the water, bouillon cubes, and cumin, and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add the chicken and simmer for another 20 minutes.

Add the yucca and green plantain and simmer for 10 minutes more. Add the potatoes, ripe plantain, and corn and simmer for another 15 minutes.

In a blender, combine the remaining 1 cup cilantro and a little of the stew broth and puree. Stir the puree into the soup, season with salt and pepper, and serve.


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