One favorite way to welcome Autumn is to get a kabocha squash from my farmer’s market and make this traditional macrobiotic dish. Aduki beans are a great bean to promote kidney health. Winter squash adds an element of good quality sweetness. Yum. This dish can be made with a variety of different beans and other root vegetables. I sometimes add dried daikon and onion. I often use black beans. The recipe that follows is the one I usually crave.
Any sweet winter squash will do. I prefer kabocha, red kuri and delicata. All three have skins that can be left on. However, I will go around and cut any hard blemishes off of the skin. These won’t get soft during cooking.
Aduki Beans with Squash and Kombu
2 inch piece kombu, soaked in water for 10 minutes
1 cup aduki beans, rinsed and soaked at least 4 hours
about 8 large (3″ or so) chunks of winter squash (delicata, butternut, kabocha, red kuri), this amount is about half of a large squash
1. Cut the kombu into small pieces and spread around in the bottom of a large pot.
2. Place the squash skin side down on top of the kombu. Drain the aduki beans and then pour the beans on top of the squash. Pour water gently down the sides just barely to the top of the beans. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to simmer and cover.
3. Check the beans while cooking and gently add a little water if necessary. Cook until the beans are almost soft. The amount of time varies, but will probably take between 1 and 1 1/2 hours.
4. When beans are almost soft, add a few pinches sea salt. Gently mix the salt into the liquid. Cook for at least 15 more minutes or until beans are completely soft.
5. Cut the squash into smaller pieces or serve as is.