All lessons in the Moist-Heat Cooking Methods section:
Stewing is an ancient form of combination cooking which involves both dry and moist heat. Small pieces of meat and/or vegetables are often first browned and then slowly cooked in a liquid until they become fork tender. Stews rely on relatively inexpensive and tough cuts of meat and almost any spice, herb, liquid and/or vegetable can be used to create them.
Appreciated for their comforting and soul-warming qualities, stews are easy to make and a favorite dish in nearly every food culture around the world.
In this lesson, you will learn that the technique of stewing is very similar to braising. There are just a few key differences, which we will cover in this lesson. While a stew can be made with just vegetables, for this lesson, we are going to focus on brown stews, using beef chuck as our example. You will learn how to choose and prepare meat for stewing and how to build a stew by adding various layers of flavor. You will learn how to cook a stew, test it for doneness and how to finish the sauce prior to serving.
These one pot wonders not only require very little effort on the cook’s part, they are even better when prepared ahead of time. By following just a few simple techniques, you will be able to create a variety of hearty and rustic stews without the need for a recipe.
At the end of this cooking school lesson, you will be able to:
- understand what stewing is and how to do it
- understand how to build flavor into a stew
- explain how much liquid should be used in a stew
- identify when a stew has finished cooking
- know how to thicken and finish the sauce
In partnership with:
Northwest Culinary Academy of Vancouver