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by on April 14th, 2010

Brunswick Stew

The 2010 April Daring Cooks challenge was hosted by Wolf of Wolf’s Den. She chose to challenge Daring Cooks to make Brunswick Stew. Wolf chose recipes for her challenge from The Lee Bros. Southern Cookbook by Matt Lee and Ted Lee, and from the Callaway, Virginia Ruritan Club.

Since it is starting to get hot here in Texas (low 80’s 🙂 ) I chose to do the shorter version of the recipe challenge. I do not want to stand one minute longer in the kitchen when I can be out floating in our pool with a glass of wine in hand. Now, that is relaxing. I have made several things from the Lee Brothers cookbook. After returning from our mother/daughter trip to Charleston last fall, I got a copy of the Lee Brothers book from out local library. There were quite a few recipes I copied out to try. So, if you get a chance, get a copy from your library and if they don’t have it, they can get it on loan from another library.

Brunswick Stew has a long, and oft debated history. Brunswick, Georgia claimed that the first Brunswick Stew was created there in 1898. There is, at the Golden Isles Welcome Center on Interstate 95, a bronzed stew pot with a plaque proclaiming this fact.

However, Brunswick, Virginia claims that the first Brunswick Stew was created there by a camp cook named Jimmy Matthews in 1828, for a hunting expedition led by Dr. Creed Haskings, a member of the Virginia State Legislature for a number of years. He was said to have used squirrel in the original Brunswick Stew created for the group when they returned. The hunters were at first skeptical of the thick, hearty concoction, but upon tasting it, were convinced and asked for more.

However, most agree that, Brunswick stew is not done properly “until the paddle stands up in the middle.”

This stew is full of chunky vegetables.

Lots of meat in this dish, bacon, chicken, ham and rabbit sausage.

Ready for stewing.

And the spoon stands up in the pot.

Brunswick Stew

Serves about 10

2 ½ lb TOTAL diced stewed chicken, rabbit, and ham, with broth – yes, all three meats (and cooked)
2 Serrano peppers
2 medium ripe crushed tomatoes
2 medium diced onions
2 stalks celery, sliced
1-2 bay leaves, fresh if you have them
3 cups frozen or fresh corn kernels
1 ½ cups frozen lima beans
4-5 strips fried, crumbled bacon
4 T. butter
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 Tablespoon Poultry Seasoning
Dash of red pepper
2 diced carrots (optional)
2-11 oz. can Tomato juice

Saute the bacon, onion and celery in a fry pan in butter (or oil) until almost done. In large stock pot or Dutch Oven, mix remaining ingredients, heat until bubbly and hot. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add tomato juice as desired. Cook until all vegetables are tender. Serve hot.

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