brunswick stew recipe???

2003/09/05 12:05:30
anyone have a recipe for brunswick stew that they are willing to share. i found a few, but each one varies so much...any tried and true ones out there? i can't get this dish ANYwhere up north!!!!
Ashley Wilkes
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2003/09/12 17:05:23
Another good place for Brunswick stew in Georgia is at O.B.’s in McDonough. It is just a few seconds drive off I-75. Another reason I like O.B.’s is that is just enough south of Atlanta to be out of all the Atlanta congestion.

Here is Kathleen Purvis’s family recipe for Brunswick stew. She is the food editor for The Charlotte Observer, but her family roots are in Georgia.

Federal rules may say true Brunswick stew has to have two kinds of meat, but I have a passel of kin in Americus who would be glad to argue. The recipe was passed down from my great-grandmother to my grandfather to my father to me.
4 pounds fresh pork, such as Boston butt
3 (15 1/4-ounce) cans whole-kernel corn, drained
3 (14 1/2-ounce) cans whole tomatoes, drained
2 1/2 large onions, peeled
3 pounds potatoes, peeled
3 (14-ounce) bottles ketchup
1/2 to 1 quart apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon black pepper, or to taste
Salt to taste
Place pork in large pot with lid. Add water about halfway up sides, cover and bring to boil. Reduce heat. Simmer slowly until fork-tender, about 2 hours.
Remove pork from pot and reserve liquid. When pork is cool enough to handle, cut into large chunks, discarding fat or bone. Working in batches, grind pork, 2 cans corn, tomatoes, onions and potatoes together.
(My grandfather used a food grinder and my father used a blender. I use a food processor - call it progress.)
Return chopped mixture to pot. Stir in remaining can of corn, ketchup, enough apple cider vinegar to make a thick consistency, salt and pepper. Add liquid from cooking pork if stew is too thick.
Place on low to medium-low heat and cook slowly, stirring frequently so it doesn't stick, until potatoes are done, at least 1 hour. Makes ... a lot.
Stew freezes well.

RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2003/09/12 19:31:13
Here's some info from one of my historical says that both Brunswick County, North Carolina AND Brunswick County, Virginia lay claim to "Brunswick Stew". It was a staple of political rallies in the 19th Century. Squirrel was a common ingredient in the stew for many years. The recipe I have calls for two 3-lb. chickens, cut up; 2 lbs. of beef or veal shin bones; 1 ham bone from baked VIRGINIA or country ham (does it make a difference? Just curious.) and one squirrel, cut in pieces, among other things. Veggies in the stew include onions, tomatoes, celery, butter beans or lima beans, corn, potatoes.
Fire Safety Admin
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2003/09/12 19:40:10
I really appreciate Brunswick Stew, however I was advised by several people that the stew begin with the leftovers with the BBQ meat. It was another way to market. There ain't nothing wrong with that as any owner of a restaurant will find a way to market leftovers.

The BBQ owners advised me that they had to do something with the leftovers and creating a stew from the meat gave them another way to sell a side.

I like Brunswick Stew.

Paul E. Smith
Knoxville, TN
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2003/09/17 15:13:45
thanks for the great recipes....i'm planning on trying one soon!
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/01 13:43:13
Does anyone have a recipe for authentic Virginia style Brunswick stew?
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/01 16:06:57
Virginia loses the contest - real Brunswick Stew is from GA. BTW - I make mine with smoked pork and brisket as well as chicken. I've won a few contests over the years so I can't reveal the recipe. I'll put mine up there with the rest of them - IMHO
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/01 17:39:49
Being from Alabama,I know that Georgia's version (and my excellent version for that matter) are superior to the Virginia version.But,I have a dear elderly friend from Virginia and I'm trying to make some Virginia-style Brunswick stew for him.Any good recipes out there?
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/01 18:35:56
To all,

My first introduction to Brunswick Stew was in Richmond, Va. I loved it. Being a Yankee in my twenties all the food "down South" was different from what I had in NY. At that time in my life I didn't know that there were different types of BBQ. Heck I didn't even know what a hushpuppie was. At home we had meat and potatoes and fish on Friday (usually Lake Erie Perch) and lots of Italian and Polish food. I then moved to Brunswick, Ga. and had the stew down there. It was wonderful as well. It really didn't matter to me where it came from as long as it was good. If you need a good recipe for the Va Style just google (it's a verb now) and type in "Virginia Style Brunswick Stew." You will find plenty of recipies plus some good history. Have fun with both but do not worry who was first just that they are both great.

Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/02 12:58:49
Chicken thighs boneless and skinless, potatoes, lima beans, onions, creamed corn, tomatoes, hot pepper, salt. Cook for about 1 hour or more till almost mushy. Very comforting.
No kidding.
Michael Hoffman
Double-chop Porterhouse
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/02 15:07:32
I'm afraid my experience with Brunswick stew is limited in that I've had it made with squirrel and/or rabbit, never any pork or chicken, or any other meat.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/02 15:29:27
Well,Michael,the original recipe supposedly contained squirrel!
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/05 13:19:57
I've got to chime in on this one. Brunswick stew has really very few defining qualities. Firstly, it is not done until a spoon will stand unsupported in the stew. ALL meats are acceptble and in what ever combinations but an all chicken or all pork stew is not so good. It is a "what do you have" recipe. Duck and rabbit are great. I personally don't "waste" squirrel on stew...biscuits and cream gravey for squirrel for me.

Canned tomatoes, frozen corn, lima beans, potatoes (we even put in a few cups of rice at the very goes away and thickens the stew) and okra if SC folks are coming all go in at various times. You will have to cook it a few times to know when to add what.
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/05 14:11:52
My family's "great hunter" once insisted that my aunt cook her Brunswick Stew recipe using rabbit and squirrel instead of the normal chicken (stewing hen) and pork roast. It was pretty good, but I didn't taste any special difference.

My pet peeve is when local NC BBQ restaurants insist on having Brunswick Stew on the menu, but dish up a very liquid form of vegetable soup that hasn't cooked down. It's usually heavy on the tomatoes and the potatoes are still in big chunks. This tastes "raw" like they were too busy to cook it right.

I have occasionally run into a batch that somebody added chicken livers to.
Captain Morgan
Double Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/05 14:50:43
The number of recipes for Brunswick Stew are as numerous as the number of cooks you ask. Like barbecue, the origin is also debated. Brunswick, Ga, claims to be the birthplace, Brunswick County in Virginia does as well. And then there's the Brunswick Islands of North Carolina. Whereever it started, it started with folks making it in big black kettles, using whatever they had, and was often divided up between families who contributed what they had. It is similar to a Kentucky Burgoo, which often includes veal or lamb.

I grew up on it in North Carolina, where it was almost always served as a side dish to barbecue. It is served just about everywhere in the south, and that of course leads to debates on what it is and who does it best. I've got recipes from Alabama, Georgia, both Carolinas and even one from up way up north.

Some of the old-timers will say it's not Brunswick stew unless it has squirrel or rabbit in it. I don't cook with those meats, although I've tried both. It's easy to understand how they got added in though. Brunswick stew originated from poor southerners, who subsisted on whatever they had.

The meats used in the recipes I've seen include beef (chuck),chicken, pork (ham, butt or loin), rabbit, squirrel, and even goat.

Vegetables I've seen included are tomatos, corn, onions, bell peppers, potatos, and lima beans. However, due to the fact that it was often made with whatever was on hand, it is not uncommon to find green beans, pea, carrots, okra or other vegetables in a Brunswick stew.

Like barbecue hash, I make my Brunswick stew with
meat that I have already smoked. You can use any cooked pork, beef or chicken, but I really find the smoke flavor, especially in the chicken, takes the stew to a whole different level.

Here's a link to Virginia's claim to the birthplace of Brunswick Stew, with the earliest known recipe.

Brunswick Stew

1 pound chopped or shredded pork butt
1 pound chopped or shredded chicken
1 pound beef chuck roast, shredded
1 large onion, chopped
28 oz crushed or diced tomatos, with juice
8 oz (1 small can) of tomato paste
10 oz lima beans, frozen or canned
15 oz of cream style corn
1/4 cup of sugar
1/2 stick butter
1/2 cup cider vinegar
1 oz hot sauce (Texas Pete is traditional in my house)
1 oz Worcestershire sauce
juice of 1 lemon
3 tbls black pepper
2 tbls salt
1/2 tbls Dried red pepper flakes

Note that I use meat that is already cooked. If you are using raw meats, you can throw them in a big pot of dutch oven and cover with water. Bring to a boil, then simmer until the meat is falling apart. Remove bones and other undesirables. After the meat is cooled, shred or chop it up.

Add all ingrediants into a pot and just cover with water. Bring to a boil and then simmer for a couple of hours. Everything should start to blend together. Stir frequently, as this will keep the meat from sticking to the bottom, and will help break up the ingrediants.

Check seasonings and add to taste. Brunswick stew freezes well, but let the stew cool before popping in the fridge or freezer. It can sour
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/05 16:21:26
Thank you Captain Morgan...That recipe looks wonderful !
Double Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/13 09:14:34
heck, even your neighbor down here, makes it different than the next person. no two, are alike, thats the beauty of it. like preiously said, its what you got not what is needed.
heres is the way my family made it for generations....
(go out into the corn field and bring me a bushel)
(go out in the garden and get me a basket of 'maters.)
those were mama's orders.

she would put a whole chicken, still hopping around some, in a big pot. add to it a side of a pig, and a big ole chunk of beef. before her time, it was koon, squirrel, maybe wild boar.
while it was cooking down, she would remove the corn kernels with a cheese grater, dice the maters, (abou tthree quarts to a gallon of each)
when the meats were falling apart, she would remove all the bones, and add the corn and water. then add the apple cider vinegar, about a pint. and about a half cup of sugar. then about two oz of mustard powder(most important part)
and lastly, a little shot of hot pepper.
cook that all day til thicker than molasses, and everyone for miles is stopping by for no reason 'xcept the smells that they folowed...
eat with corn bread....hhmmm...and sweet tea

mama said that any other veggies were added by restaurants who wanted to increase profit line, not by the original family recipe.

i use smoked meats, and i add taters(cause i like them), but otherwise, i try to stick close to the recipe.
Double Chili Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/13 10:38:11
Mike,I love your Mama !
Double Cheeseburger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2007/03/16 09:55:52 too! but i will pass your message.
Junior Burger
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2013/01/01 18:18:25
This is as close as I can get to Mrs. Fernow's Brunswick stew:
1 store cooked traditional rotissierie chicken, deboned and chopped
1 large onion, chopped
4 T butter
6 medium potatoes, diced
32 oz low sodium chicken broth
1 28 oz can petite diced tomatoes with liquid
1 14 oz can large butterbeans, drained
1 14 oz can lima beans, drained
1 14 oz can gold and white super sweet corn, drained
Liquid Smoke
Tabasco Sauce
3 T apple cider vinegar
3 T catsup

Chop onion in food processor. Saute onion in melted butter in stock pot or dutch oven. Dice potatoes. Add to onions. Pour in chicken broth. Cook potatoes in broth until tender. Add diced tomatoes with liquid, drained can of corn, drained lima beans, chopped chicken. Chop can of drained butter beans in food processor (or mash with potato masher), add to stew as a thickener. Add salt and pepper to taste. Add several dashes of Tabasco sauce (to taste), apple cider vinegar and catsup. Simmer and stir often to shred chicken. Cook until you can’t stand it and enjoy.
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2013/01/01 20:49:21
I prefer the less "ketchupy" variety of Brunswick Stew that is typical of Virginia.  The first time I ever had this was in the dining hall of Mary Baldwin College where, as a faculty member, one of my "benefits" was a "free lunch".  (God Bless you Mrs. Carr for supervising all that truly wonderful Southern cooking)!  All the "Virginia variety" of Brunswick stew seem to be variants of this recipe from Virginia Hospitality
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2013/01/01 22:52:37
Brunswick Stew is like Chili, Potato Salad and Biscuits----No two people make it the same and even the same recipe comes out different every time it's made.
as Andrew Zimmern says, "If it looks good, eat it"! 
RE: brunswick stew recipe??? 2013/01/28 15:52:00
I used the recipe from the Lodge cookbook. It came out pretty good. The attached pic is before cooking it down. I didn't use anything canned or frozen. Fresh okra, fresh corn cut off the cob, fresh tomatoes diced, well - you get the picture. It went very fast! As did the corn bread with fresh churned butter. I used chicken and pork - was fresh out of squirrels.
My stew cooking away:

And some corn bread:

post edited by callmebruce - 2013/01/28 16:27:23