Guisado de quintonil (stewed amaranth greens with tomatoes and onion) recipe

<i>Guisado de quintonil</i> (stewed amaranth greens with tomatoes and onion) recipe
Guisado de quintonil (stewed amaranth greens with tomatoes and onion). (Kirk McKoy / Los Angeles Times)
Total time: 45 minutes

Servings: 4

Note: The word "quelite" in Mexico means any native green with tender leaves. Amaranth greens, known as quintoniles, are abundant during Mexico City's rainy season from about June to September. Amaranth greens are available at select Asian or Indian markets, as well as at some farmers markets; fresh spinach or chard can be substituted, though cooking timing will vary. Feel free to use less chicken broth if you want the greens less juicy.

3/4 pound quintoniles (amaranth greens)


1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/2 white onion, chopped (about 1 cup)

2 cloves garlic, minced

1/2 large serrano chile, minced with seeds (about 2 teaspoons)

3 tomatoes (about 11 ounces), chopped

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

1/4 cup chicken broth

Tortillas, for serving

1. Wash the greens several times in cold water to remove excess dirt. Fill a 3½-quart pot about two-thirds of the way with water and bring to a boil. Add 1 teaspoon salt and then the greens. Boil until just tender, about 3 minutes (timing will vary if using other greens). Strain and set aside.

2. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent and softened, 3 to 5 minutes, stirring frequently. Add the garlic, stirring until aromatic, 15 to 30 seconds. Stir in the minced serrano, tomatoes, black pepper and one-fourth teaspoon salt, or to taste. Cook until the tomatoes just begin to break down, about 5 minutes.

3. Pour in the chicken broth and stew, covered, until the flavors marry, about 10 minutes. This makes about 4 cups quisado de quintonil. Serve with tortillas.

Each serving (without tortillas): 75 calories; 3 grams protein; 9 grams carbohydrates; 3 grams fiber; 4 grams fat; 0 saturated fat; 0 cholesterol; 3 grams sugar; 621 mg sodium.