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Guatemalan Stews With Mayan Roots, at Ix in Brooklyn

Jocón, a Guatemalan stew, can be so green you’d imagine it had its own Pantone color. As with many Central American stews with Mayan origins, called recados, its body is thickened with ground seeds. When freshly made, it feels almost frothy.

At Ix in Prospect Lefferts Gardens, Brooklyn, the broth varies in color, but always leans French: The chef, Jorge Cárdenas, simmers a chicken stock for 18 hours and strains it three times, adding fresh bones and vegetables with each round. Vegetarian customers can opt for the vegetable stock, fortified with cilantro and carrot tops, similarly cooked and strained.

Your chosen broth thins out a verdant purée of pumpkin seeds, cilantro, tomatillo, scallions and green peppers. When the bowl of jocón arrives at the table, it wears a garnish of green beans, a visual hint of the stew’s essence. Hiding inside are white rice, potato chunks big as meatballs and featherlike shreds of chicken. (Some dishes can be made vegan, to order.) Even on a hot day, it’s wildly refreshing.

Mr. Cárdenas opened Ix (pronounced eesh) in November 2017 with his cousins Brenda Castellanos and Ana Prince, who opened Taquería El Patron Mexican Grill next door in 2015. (Mr. Cadenas credits his cousins with providing the knowledge necessary to open and maintain a restaurant in New York.)

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