Brunswick Stew (Virginia-Style)

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Preparation time:
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Difficulty: Easy - for beginners

Dietary guidance: n d 

Tags: soup · stew ·


1 tbsp butter
1 yellow onion, peeled & diced
1/2 lb smoked ham steak, cubed
3 boneless skinless chicken breasts
6 cups chicken stock
1 bay leaf
1 tbsp packed brown sugar
1 tsp freshly cracked black pepper, plus more to taste
1 tsp kosher salt, plus more to taste
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 14.5oz cans stewed tomatoes
2 russet potatoes, peeled and cut in a small dice
1 1/2 cups frozen butter beans or baby lima beans
1 1/2 cups frozen corn kernels


Place a large pot over medium heat. Add butter to pot. Once the pot is heated and the butter is melted, added the onion. Sweat the onion over medium heat until translucent, stirring occasionally, about 10 minutes.

Add the ham, chicken breasts, bay leaf, brown sugar, black pepper, kosher salt and Worcestershire to the pot. Raise heat to medium high and bring to a boil. Once it reaches a boil reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for about 30 minutes until chicken is just cooked through.

Remove chicken from pot. Let cool until able to handle then shred using either two forks or your hands.

While the chicken is waiting to be shredded, add the stewed tomatoes, cubed potatoes and lima/butter beans to the pot. Bring to a simmer and continue cooking over medium-low, stirring occasionally. Add shredded chicken to the pot.

Cook at a gentle simmer for approximately 1 to 1 1/2 hours until potatoes are very tender. Using a potato masher, mash the soup to help assist the potatoes in breaking down and thus thickening the stew.

Add the corn to the stew. Cook another 10 minutes. Taste and adjust seasonings to taste with kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Like with all stews and braised dishes - it will taste even better on the second day!


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