Worldwide Stew Recipes

I thought it would be nice if I could compare how different countries prepared a similar dish. After a lot of deliberating and input from friends I decided on the good old STEW. Surely that is prepared all over the world. So if you read this and your country is not listed, please email me a recipe for stew as it traditionally prepared in your country! Please add a bit of history of your recipe to make it interesting!

South Africa

Tomato Bredie
Try this traditional 18th century South African recipe. A bredie is an old Cape name for a dish of stewed fat mutton and vegetable.

25 ml butter (or margarine, lard or sunflower oil)
2 large onions, sliced
1 clove garlic, crushed
1.5 kg stewing lamb or mutton, cubed
10 ml salt
milled pepper
little stock, water or wine
500 g potatoes, sliced
1 kg medium tomatoes, skinned and chopped
5 ml white sugar
2 ml dried thyme
5 ml chopped fresh marjoram

Heat the butter in a large saucepan and sauté the onions and garlic for about 5 minutes or until the onions are transparent. Add the meat and brown quickly on all sides. Add the salt, pepper and a little stock, water or wine and simmer, covered, for 90 to 120 minutes, or until the meat starts to get tender. Add the potatoes, tomatoes, sugar, thyme and marjoram and stew for a further hour. Serve with cooked rice.

United Kingdom

This was received from Geoff & Chris Holt in Kent - (2 million sheep and 4 trees!!!!!!)  awww shame, what do the sheep do for shade?? - Peter

Traditional Lancashire Hotpot

This has acquired its name from the time when it was baked at home, then wrapped in blankets to keep it hot and provide lunch for a day at the races.

2lb (900g) best end & middle neck of lamb, chopped into chop-sized pieces
4 lamb’s kidneys, cored, skinned and chopped fairly small
12oz (350g) onions, roughly chopped
A little butter 
1 tablespoon of flour
1 pint (570ml) hot water, mixed with half a teaspoon of Worcestershire sauce
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs fresh thyme, or half a teaspoon of dried thyme
2lb (900g) potatos, cut into ¾ inch (2 cm) slices
salt and freshly milled black pepper

Pre-heat oven to gas mark 3, 325deg.F (170deg.C) 

First trim the meat of any excess fat. In a large frying pan heat some dripping until it is smoking hot, then brown the pieces of meat, two or three at a time until they all have a good brown crust. As they cook, remove them to a wide casserole. Brown the pieces of kidney too, and tuck these in amongst the meat.

Next fry the onions – add a little butter to the pan if you need any extra fat – cooking them for about 10 minutes until they turn brown at the edges. Now stir in the flour to soak up the juices, then gradually add the hot water and Worcestershire sauce, stirring or whisking until flour and liquid are smoothly blended. Season with salt and pepper and bring it to simmering point, then pour it over the meat in the casserole. Add the bay leaf and thyme, then arrange the potato slices on top, in an overlapping pattern like slates on a roof. Season the potatoes and add a few flecks of butter here and there. Cover with a tight fitting lid and cook near the top of the oven for 1 ½ hours, then remove the lid and cook for a further 50 minutes.

You can finish off the hotpot under the grill, if you wish. If you brush the potatoes with a little more butter and place the casserole under a hot grill they crisp up and brown beautifully. Alternatively, if you think they are not browning enough during cooking, you can turn the heat in the oven right up during the last 15 minutes. (Serves 4 people)


The following recipes from Felicity in Anchorage, Alaska. Although Alaska is patr of the States, for me it has always sorta been a country on it's own, so for purpose of this page I will list them separately.
Rabbit Stew with Dumplings

1 Rabbit - cut in serving pieces
1 1/2 teaspoons (7ml) salt
1 1/2 cups (360 ml) diced potatoes
1 cup (240ml) diced carrots
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon (15 ml) fresh or dried parsley
1 teaspoon (5ml) salt
1/4 teaspoon (1 ml) pepper
3 tablespons (45 ml) flour
3/4 cup (180ml) cold water
Put rabbit into a pan large enough to hold pieces without crowding. Add salt and enough cold water to cover the rabbit. Cover pan, bring to a boil, then reduce heat and cook over low heat about one hour, or until meat is tender.
Strain the broth and set aside. With a sharp knife, cut the rabbit meat from the bones and return the meat to the broth. Add diced vegetables and seasonings and simmer over low heat until vegetables are tender. Mix flour and cold water into a paste and add to the stew, stirring constantly to prevent lumping. Make dumplings, add to pan and cook as directed below.

3/4 cup (180 ml) flour
2 teaspoons (10 ml) baking powder
1/2 teaspoon (2 ml) salt
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/3 cup (80 ml) milk
Sift dry ingredients together, add beaten egg and milk, stirring just enough to moisten all. Drop by spoonfuls on top of finished, hot stew, spacing the dumpling so they will not run together during cooking. Place heavy lid on to and cook for 15 minutes without lifting lid. Serves eight.
Northern Cookbook (adapted for Cooking Alaskan by Alaskans)

Polar Bear Stew

4 pounds (1.8 kg) polar bear meat
Water to cover
3 tablespoons (45ml)salt
1 1/2 cups (360 ml) dried potato
1 cup (340 ml) celery flakes
1 tablespoon (15ml) dry union
2 cups (480 ml) dehydrated carrots
1/2 cup (120ml) melted butter
1 3/4 cups (420 ml) flour
1 teaspoon (5ml) garlic powder or garlic salt
3/4 teaspoon (3ml) pepper

Cut meat into bite-sized pieces and boil in salted water for 1 1/2 hours or more. Then add dry vegetables; mix melted butter with flour, blend in seasonings and add to meat. Cook 15 minutes longer. The stew is ready. Makes eight to ten servings
Cooking Alaskan by Alaskans
Norma Silook, Gambell, Saint Lawrence Island


The following was sent to me by Raffy Naples, a friend now living in Italy.

History of the "Stufato alla sangiovannese" 

The Stufato alla sangiovannese served in the Saloni della Basilica - and only here - on the various Sundays during the Uffizi del Carnevale, has its own history. No ancient records exist but its story survives from the personal accounts of those who have long been involved in its preparation and presentation.

At the beginning of this century there were some workmen who were excellent cooks working in local factories such as the Ferriera, the Ceramica, the Fornaci Bagiardi - people like Virgilio Aldinuzzi (1888-1953), Giuseppe Forconi (1887-1945) and Carlo Bettoni (1906-1966).They sometimes cooked stews made from cubes of veal instead of the more traditional offal. In 1915, during the war, Aldinuzzi went to Lybia where he became the cook for his regiment. Here he discovered the use of spices, as well as learning to cook for many people. When he returned home to San Giovanni, he cooked his recipe with veal and spices, first for the workmen at the Ferriera, the local foundry, and later for the people who went to the Saloni della Basilica during the Uffizi del Carnevale. 

Later, other people discovered his secret recipe and a competition then started between the local cooks – a competition which continues today. Thanks to the Aldinuzzi family, we are able to publish the original recipe for the first time (see above). 

(This text is from P.Bonci, in La Basilica, Year 1, N.2 December 1999, pages. 3; 4)


Stufato alla sangiovannese

Veal; shanks; chopped onions, celery, carrot and parsley; separately fine-chopped garlic and lemon peel; salt, pepper and spices and a little nutmeg: soup bones, olive oil, red wine and a little tomato paste.

The "secret" is difficult to explain because it depends on a series of important aspects, such as: 

- the quantity and type of meat
- the type of pot (terracotta or aluminium is recommended)
- the ladle (only wood) with which everything is stirred
- and finally the hand that stirs it

Notwithstanding this, place the meat in the pot with the oil and the two chopped ingredients. Add the salt, pepper, the common spices and the nutmeg. Mix it all with the ladle and then place it over the heat.

Separately, place the soup bones and water and bring them to a slow boil.

Brown the meat and other ingredients in the pot well until the oil at the bottom doesn’t appear transparent. At this point, add enough red wine to cover the meat and allow it to evaporate under a strong flame. When it has reduced and taken on a brown colour, add just enough of the tomato paste not to turn the meat too red.

The broth is added bit by bit as required by the mixture.

Fifteen minutes before the mixture is cooked, add a little nutmeg. Then allow it to slowly boil for about four hours.



The following recipe was sent to me by Unn Bing from Sweden -

Swedish Stew (Kalops).

500-600 g meat
2 tablespoon of butter
10 allspiceseeds
1½ teaspoon of salt
2 laurelleaf
5 dl water
3-4 carrots
1 leek or 2-3 onions
3 tablespoon of flour
½-1 dl water

Fry the meat and put it in a pot. Add water, salt and the rest of the spices. Boil it for at least an hour. 
Add the carrots chopped in slices and boil for another 10 minutes. Then add chopped leek/onions. Boil 10 minutes more.
Mix flour with a little water and add it to the stew. Boil 3-5 minutes.
Add more spices if necessary.

Serve the Kalops with boiled potatoes and pickled beetroots. Drink: beer or milk.

Smaklig måltid (bon apetit)!


The following was received from my friend, Tint, currently living in Sao Paulo, Brazil


Ingredients for 10 large portions
500 g salted shoulder of pork;
500 g salted pork spare ribs;
500 g pig's tail salted;
1 kg salted trotters;
500 g smoked shoulder of pork;
400 g smoked breast of pork;
500 g calabresa - a spiced sausage;
If possible 1 kg carne seca (Brazilian dried beef);
2 kg small Brazilian black beans or red speckled beans;
2 onions;
1 head garlic;
1 stick celery;
1 bouquet garni;
3 bay leaves;
1 teaspoon freshly milled black pepper;
5 oranges.

To these ingredients must also be added those of the usual garnishes.

Feijoada takes a long time to prepare and outside Brazil it is very hard to find Brazilian beans. It is very difficult to find exported Brazilian carne seca, but don't let this bother you - if all the other ingredients are of a high quality, your feijoada will be excellent.

Feijoada is a party dish. There are as many recipes for lt as there are Brazilian families.

The evening before, rinse the slightly salted meats, and leave to soak all night under a thin trickle of water.

Put the meat, beans, onions, crushed garlic, finely chopped celery, bay leaves, bouquet garni and the pepper into a large, heavy pot. Fill with water. Bring slowly to boiling point and leave to simmer for 2 hours. Remove each piece of meat from the pot, as soon as it is cooked. Cook the beans for another hour. (The liquid should become thick and creamy). Pour the beans into a cast-iron dish. Cut the meat into cubes and add to the beans. Bring to the boil, simmer for 10 minutes and serve.

Put in the centre of each plate about 2 ladles full of meat and beans. Around the edge put 3 spoonfuls of white rice Brazilian style, 2 spoonfuls of couve cut into thin strips and place a slice (not a segment) of peeled orange on the rice. After having mixed everything together in your plate, the feijoada is ready to be eaten. 

Suggested drinks: The ritual tor a Brazilian is to drink caipirinha (a lime cocktail) with the meal.



  (Apr 23, 2003) The following was sent to me by Yvonne Fernie....thanx, Yvonne


2 lbs (1 kg) either boneless venison, pork, beef or lamb, cut into cite-size pieces
1/3 C all-purpose flour
1/4 C plus 1 tbs olive oil
2 onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 carrots, peeled, cut into 1/2" rounds
1 small rutabago (about 2 lbs/1 kg), peeled, cut into bite-sized cubes
19 oz (540 ml) can plum tomatoes, undrained, chopped
2 tbs red wine vinegar
2 bay leaves
2 tsp minced ginger
1 tsp each: ground cinnamon, ground coriander, cumin
1/2 tsp each: toasted fennel seeds, salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 C beef broth
2 tbs liquid honey
15 dried apricots, halved
12 pitted prunes, halved
6 dried figs, stemmed, halved

In a bowl or zip-lok bag, toss the meat with flour.

In a large heavy Dutch oven or saucepan, heat 2 tbs oil over medium-high heat. Brown the meat in two batches, flipping often, and adding 2 tbs oil for the second batch if needed. Remove meat to a bowl..

Add onions, garlic and remaining 1 tbs oil to the pot. Cook 5 minutes
over medium-high heat, stirring often, until softened. Stir in the
carrots, rutabaga, tomatoes and their liquid, vinegar, bay leaves, ginger, cinnamon, coriander, cumin, fennel, salt, pepper, broth, honey
and reserved meat with any juices. Raise heat to high; bring to a
boil, scraping up browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat
to medium-low. Simmer, covered, for 2 hours, stirring occasionally.

Stir in apricots, prunes and figs. Simmer, uncovered, for 45 minutes
or until the meat is tender. Discard bay leaves. Taste and adjust
seasoning as necessary.
Serve with rice.

Makes 6 servings.

This stew can be cooled, covered and refrigerated for up to two days, or frozen for up to one month.



Following from Kathy from Atlanta

Pete, this is a recipe worth trying: Brunswick Stew. It was originally created in Brunswick, a port town on the Georgia coast, I imagine after the state was started by the British. It is perfect for winter, in a slow-cooker, cooked for hours at low temperature. It is pretty rich, and they recommend serving with BBQ (braai'ed meat) or seafood, but I would recommend rice or mash and a light salad. And I would scale it down some:

13 lb chicken (about 6.5 kg)
1 lb lean pork
1 lb lean beef
3 medium onions
(originally squirrels would be used instead of chicken and beef, but I haven't convinced my husband to hunt any for me yet, so can't say how it tastes)
Place meat in large (it has to be to fit all that in) heavy pot. Season with salt, pepper. Add onions and cover with water. Cook until meat falls from bones (several hours). Remove from heat and allow to cool. Pull meat to shreds and return to stock.

Add: 4 cans tomatoes
5 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1.5 bottles tomato sauce (14oz)
1 tbsp Tabasco
2 bay leaves
1/2 bottles chilli sauce (12 oz
1/2 tspns dry mustard
1/2 sticks butter.
Cook 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
3 tbspns vinegar
2 cans (16oz) small lima or butter beans
2 cans creamstyle corn
1 can (15oz) peas
3 diced potatoes.
Cook slowly until thick.

There are many variations, but from I see the key is the multi-species meat and the acidic sauce. Really good. Potential for modifying into Potjie.

Long-time friend from Michigan, JoAnn, sent me this kewl fridge magnet with this Roadkill Stew Recipe on it!


  And in case you can't make out the recipe, here it is:

Michigan Road Kill Stew Recipe

Take 3 lb fresh roadkill (no more than 3 days old) .  Remove fur, feathers and remaining internal organs. Place in pot with 1 can diced tomatoes, 1 T brown sugar, 1/2 C. wine, 4 T tapioca, 1/2 C. bread crumbs, 1 Bay leaf and salt and pepper. Cook all day. Serve over rice  so that the maggots won't be noticed. For added flavor, add any bugs or moths scraped from the windshield.


In the USA the state of Michigan is considered part of Heartland America. In total there are nineteen states that make up Heartland America which are representative of American culture.