This spiced fruit stew, or "Colada Morada" as it's officially called, is a family favorite in Ecuador. It’s not necessarily super healthy as it's got a fair amount of sugar in it, but it is homemade, full of nourishing fruit, and vegan. In Ecuador, people make Colada Morada for Dia De Los Muertos – Day of the Dead, which falls just 24 hours after Halloween.

Colada Morada: Ecuadorean Spiced Fruit Stew [Vegan]

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Ingredients

  • Peel of 1 orange and 1 lime
  • 1 lemongrass stick
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 3-4 whole cloves
  • 3 juniper berries
  • 5-6 ounces brown sugar
  • 4 cups plus 2 cups of water
  • 1 cup of fresh or frozen blackberries
  • 1 cup of fresh or frozen blueberries
  • About 2 oranges, peeled, de-seeded and broken into large pieces
  • 1/2 cup of organic corn flour OR 1/4 cup of organic coconut flour (see tips below)
  • 1 cup of sweet, ripe pears, peeled and cut into chunks (see tips for alternatives)
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Preparation

  1. Get all your ingredients out onto the kitchen counter, washed, measured and ready to use.
  2. Place the orange and lime peel, lemongrass, cinnamon, cloves, juniper berries and sugar in a deep pot together with 4 cups of water. Boil for about 20 minutes.
  3. As this is cooking away, place the blueberries and blackberries in a separate smaller pot with 2 cups of water. Boil for about 20 minutes.
  4. In the meantime, take the pieces of peeled oranges and place in a blender. I used a VitaMix, but any blender should do the trick. Blend until mushy. Set aside.
  5. Remove the blue and blackberry mixture from the heat, let it cool a little and then place it in your blender until the mixture resembles a thick runny jam. Pour the mixture through a sieve and set aside.
  6. By now the watery orange, lime and spice infused liquid should be ready. Pour through a sieve. In a deep pot, mix the resulting liquid with your chosen flour until the flour is completely diluted. Then add the strained berry mix and the blended oranges. Mix over a low heat for another 10-15 minutes adding a tiny bit more water if need be.
  7. Just before serving, add the chopped up pears, keeping some back to garnish the bowl at the end.
  8. Enjoy warm or cold.

Notes

Tip 1: You can use pineapple or strawberries instead of pears. I had a few frozen strawberry and pineapple which I used for visual effect in one of the pictures, but for flavor I felt nothing could top the pears. Tip 2: I made two versions, one using the organic corn flour and the other using organic coconut flour. The former was my favorite as it resulted in a lighter drink. The corn flour is also cheaper and easier to find. Using the coconut flour tasted great, but the Colada Morada was a little bit thicker and the flour is quite pricey. Ultimately, it’s a personal choice, so go with what you fancy.

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