Culinary experts share their Ultimate Stew Builder for stew season

Culinary experts have shared their Ultimate Stew Builder, along with the mistakes YOU could be making.

Common mistakes include not searing the meat beforehand.
Credit: Flickr/ James
  • A sharp increase in online searches around stew recipes in Ireland signifies the beginning of stew season.
  • Data experts at HelloFresh have created the Ultimate Stew Builder to make creating delicious stew dishes as easy as possible. 
  • To support novice stew makers, the Head of Culinary at HelloFresh Ireland has also revealed the most common mistakes around stew making and tips on how to avoid them.

It’s officially stew season here in Ireland, as searches for the famous Irish recipe have shot up 66% since the start of October. 

To celebrate the cosy cultural dish and to help Irish home cooks avoid common mistakes associated with cooking stews, culinary data experts from HelloFresh have created the Ultimate Stew Builder which uses data to pair popular stew recipes together to create the ultimate stew. 

Simply choose your protein, veggies, sauce and sides according to the builder to create the perfect stew. All combinations have been selected by analysing highest rated recipes from a range of sources, to see which ingredients are most popularly paired together. 

Culinary experts share their Ultimate Stew Builder for stew season.

Heavier meats such as beef and lamb are best paired with root vegetables like carrots, potatoes and onions, steeped in hearty sauces like red wine and beef stock. Meanwhile white meat is best paired with tangier and creamier sauces like white wine, chicken stock and heavy cream. 

Alongside the data-led Ultimate Stew Builder, Head of Culinary at HelloFresh Ireland, Hannah Duxbury, has revealed the most common stew mistakes as well as tips on how to make the dish even tastier.

Common Stew Mistakes to Avoid 

1. Not Searing the Meat Beforehand

“Stew is such an easy one-pot meal, so it’s no surprise that most people throw everything into the pan for ease. But actually, browning your protein before adding it to your stew can enhance flavour by caramelising the meat’s surface and creating a more varied texture,” explains Hannah.

2. Not Allowing Enough Simmer Time 

“One common mistake when cooking stew is not allowing it to simmer long enough. Stews benefit from slow cooking to tenderise the meat and develop flavours, so rushing the process can make it less flavourful and tender. I’d recommend simmering the stew for at least one to two hours for the flavours to really meld.” 

3. Adding Herbs Too Early 

“Fresh herbs are delicate and therefore have a tendency to lose their flavour if cooked too long, so it’s best to add these near the end of the stewing process. Add fresh herbs such as basil, parsley, coriander and dill in the final minutes of cooking or as a garnish to help retain their vibrant flavours.”

4. Ignoring the Resting Period Before Serving

“Rushing to serve your stew immediately after it’s done cooking can be a common oversight. To allow your flavours to intensify, it’s best to allow your stew to rest for a short period after serving. That’s why stew can taste even better the next day – it’s a perfect dish for batch cooking!” 

5. Neglecting the Importance of Seasoning Throughout

“Seasoning isn’t a one-time affair; it’s an ongoing process that can significantly impact the final taste of your stew. Some cooks make the mistake of seasoning only at the beginning or end of the cooking process. However, regularly tasting and adjusting the seasoning throughout the simmering time allows you to build layers of flavour and ensure that every element of the stew is well-seasoned.” 

With HelloFresh’s stew builder and five expert tips, creating the perfect stew is easy. More delicious stews can be found on HelloFresh’s recipe hub.

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