The weather is finally cooling down, and my schedule continues to be hectic. So, I only have two things on my mind when it comes to meals. Comfort and slow cookers! This Crockpot Mexican Stew was just the right meal. Anything that I can prep the night before and dump into the crockpot in the morning is a winner for me. I had some bison stew meat in the freezer and decided it would go well with some of my favorite Mexican flavors. Grass-fed beef stew meat could also be used for this Crockpot Mexican Stew or even dark chicken meat.
I absolutely love the Fall. Sadly, here in Northern California, we have barely had a chance to experience it yet. We were still having record hot days just a few weeks ago! If the sun goes behind a cloud, or there's a drop of rain, bring on a sweater and some boots. I crave warm, comforting meals immediately. Even if it does get hot again in the afternoon, I'll take what I can get!
As you've probably noticed in my previous books, I love to use salsa as the main flavor ingredient. Especially for my Mexican inspired crockpot meals. It saves a ton of time with not having to chop all the onions, garlic, tomatoes, and herbs separately, and the flavors are bold. So I did the same here by purchasing one of my favorite fresh, organic salsa verde from the market (you can also use the homemade recipe in my book Against all Grain). You can pick your favorite salsa and decide what heat level you want. Make sure there's no added sugar or citric acid, which is usually derived from corn.
Chayote Squash is native to Mexico and perfect for this dish. Besides the fact that I love the mild flavor, it's perfect for soaking up the flavor of the chili. If you cannot find it, zucchini or another squash would be a great substitute. The cool cashew lime “sour cream” and diced avocado on top lend a cool flavor that perfectly complements the mild spice of the dish. We served this Crockpot Mexican Stew over the coconut-lime cauliflower rice from page 126 in my first cookbook, but any cauliflower rice recipe will work!