Stewing is a method of slow-cooking relatively small pieces of meat and poultry with moist heat until rendered tender. Such long-simmered goodness comes with aromas that tug at your senses and deep, rich flavors that warm the depths of your soul. And it’s a good way to get maximum value out of economical cuts.
The principles of the stewing technique hold true to any kind of cubed beef, pork, veal, lamb, and poultry being prepared. A whole chicken cut into 4 or 8 pieces can also be stewed.
Cooking with moist heat makes stewing related to other cooked-in-liquid methods, including braising and poaching. Long hours of slow cooking break down the muscle fibers and connective tissue to make it fork tender.
The liquid in which you stew can be made up of stock chosen to complement the main ingredient, wine, water, or a combination of two or more.
Generally, stews freeze very well, so there’s really no such thing as cooking too much stew. Also, it’s a good idea to make your stew a day or two before you plan to serve it, as the flavors meld and mingle in the refrigerator.
So grab some crusty bread and make a green salad, and you’re on your way to comfort-food heaven.