Tuesday, November 10, 2009

I Need a Cooking Dictionary!

I was looking at some recipes this morning in an email I get every day. It has lots of good recipes in it, and whether I ever make them or not, I like to read them. But today I got to wondering about something and I'll see if anyone can get me straight on my conundrum.

What is the difference in soup and stew? Is there a particular ingredient that is in one that isn't in the other? Does the stew have to do with the way the meat is cut? Or is it that there are certain veggies that is 'allowed' in one and a 'no no' in the other?

When I make beef stew for example, I use stew meat that I buy at the store cut into chunks, or I buy a cheap cut of beef and cut it up myself. I usually add onion, potatoes, tomato juice and some salt and pepper. But if I make the same thing except I use ground beef that I brown in the place of the chunks, we call it beef soup. I also usually add corn and carrots to the beef soup. Is that what makes it different?

Oh, and I just had another thought. How does chowder, goulash and gumbo come into this mix. I've always been told that gumbo must have okra in it to be called gumbo, so that makes a little sense as to why it's called something else.

You know the saying,'you can't tell the players without a program'? Well, I'm beginning to think the same about cooking.

And Tipper at Blind Pig and the Acorn was right when she said people thought polenta was a gourmet dish, when it was basically what sustained a lot of people who had very little else to eat.

Have you made your Thanksgiving plans yet? What about a menu? What dish is your speciality that you always make for special occasions?

Hope you are having a great Tuesday. Pray for our country(we saw a group from the 875th leave for Afghanistan this morning). Love one another.


#1daughter said...

If I get you a cooking dictionary will you come to my house and cook?

Laura ~Peach~ said...

i dunno... and now am more confused than ever since i just asked yesterday what the difference in stock and broth is...
i am guessing though that stew is how the meat is prepared... in my stews i ummm drege in flour and brown the meat in soups i just brown the meat nakid... and my veggie soups always have okra in them so are they gumbo??? no i dont think so... but... sigh let me know what you find out LOL

Robbin with 2 B's! said...

Rachal Ray makes something she calls a "stoop" which is a soup and stew together just to confuse you more!

Megan G said...

I think stew is supposed to have a thicker broth, more like gravy. But I'm no cooking expert. :)

By the way, I don't know you at all! I just found this blog when I was looking up "Will it snow this winter in Arkansas"? I live in Little Rock and I really want it to snow. :)

Glad I stumbled on your blog - I like it and have been reading away! Can't wait to try the tomato and bacon dip!

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