Spring Vegetable Stew
When fresh fava beans are available, use them in place of the cranberry beans.
Veal Stew with Spring Greens
This lemony stew has a delicious mix of spinach, sorrel, watercress, romaine and herbs.
Beer-Braised Chicken Stew with Fava Beans and Peas
Paul Kahan is a big fan of chicken thighs because they have so much flavor and are so inexpensive—the best of both worlds. He braises the thighs in beer to make an excellent spring stew that he (naturally) pairs with more beer, such as Pere Jacques from Chicago's Goose Island Beer Company, a Belgian-style ale full of caramelized malt flavors.
Ham, Escarole and Bean Stew
Jose Garces slowly simmers white beans in a rich pork stock, then combines them with cooked pork butt. An easier way is to use slab bacon and smoked ham stand in for cooked pork butt. Both will add a great smoky flavor to the canned white beans.
Fresh Shell Bean Stew
Light yet flavorful, this meal makes a fantastic side dish or appetizer.
White Bean Stew
Making this slightly smoky bean stew is very easy: Just sauté, vegetables: add water, ham hock and beans; then let everything simmer. Mixing in a garlic mayonnaise and bitter greens at the table provides additional flavor and depth.
Simplest Chicken-and-Leek Stew
Before cooking the chicken for his lovely stew, Jamie Oliver lightly coats the pieces in flour. Not only does that help the meat brown, it also thickens the tangy mustard sauce.
Melissa Clark's favorite part of the chicken is the drumstick, because it's juicy and easy to brown. She likes using only drumsticks in this mustardy stew—thickened with tangy crême fraiche—so that all the meat cooks at the same rate.
Kale and White-Bean Stew
Combining Two Portuguese favorites—kale-and-sausage soup and a bean, sausage, and tomato stew—makes a simple, sensational one-pot meal. To keep the focus on the vegetables, we've used just a tiny amount of fresh sausage; you can add more, if you like, or substitute dried chorizo or pepperoni.
Greek Fish Stew
"On the Greek island of Kalymnos, fishermen make a stew with shellfish, whole fish, lemon, onion and water," says Andrew Zimmern. "They eat it straight from the pot with their hands—no bowls. It tastes of sweat and iodine, but it is easily one of the best soups I've ever had. I make my version with halibut, throwing in mussels at the end."
Caraway-Spiced Chickpea Stew with Mint Yogurt
"I like to add something unusual to a dish," says Yotam Ottolenghi about including caraway—a spice often used in northern and eastern Europe—in his otherwise Mediterranean stew. To give the dish a mellow sweetness, he adds roasted carrots.
Marseille-Style Shrimp Stew
Large shrimp make this a knife-and-fork stew. Melissa Clark spreads a garlicky French rouille on toasts for dipping in the stew.
Mexican Chicken Pozole Verde
There are many variations on pozole, a traditional hominy-based Mexican stew closely associated with the Pacific-coast state of Guerrero. Anya von Bremzen's version, a green pozole, derives much of its flavor from tangy ingredients like tomatillos, cilantro and green chiles.
Chickpea and Spinach Stew
In Seville, chickpeas and spinach (garbanzos con espinacas) is a popular dish served in both fine restaurants and tapas bars. It's simple but incredibly tasty, with plenty of flavor from tomato, raisins and saffron.
Even though Linton Hopkins's stew is full of shrimp and sausage, the best part is the delicate lima beans, a Southern staple.
Étouffée—from the French word for smother, stew or braise—is a classic Cajun dish of shellfish (or sometimes chicken) served over rice. Grace Parisi uses chicken breast, whole wheat flour and only three ounces of andouille sausage to make the recipe lighter.
Soba Noodles with Dashi, Poached Egg and Scallions
Chef Douglas Keane of Cyrus restaurant in Healdsburg, California, and an F&W Best New Chef 2006 creates a quick but flavorful broth using kombu (a type of seaweed) and dashi powder (an instant Japanese stock made from shaved bonito—tuna flakes). He poaches eggs in the broth and serves them for a protein-rich lunch or even breakfast.
Thai Chicken Stew with Potato-Chive Dumplings
Pino Maffeo serves his vibrant, spicy, warming stew with gai lan (Chinese broccoli). Sautéed garlic chives stud his plump potato dumplings. At home, use baby bok choy, an easy-to-find Chinese green, to replace the gai lan, while regular chives substitute for the garlic chives.
Fish Stew with Peppers, Almonds and Saffron
Sam Clark uses homemade fish stock in this smoky stew, which he sometimes cooks in a cazuela (a glazed terra-cotta dish from Spain). For a simpler version, make the stew in a lidded casserole, replacing the fish stock with water. It will still taste delicious.
Fresh Shell Bean and Tomato Stew
This easy summer stew is a great opportunity to use "field seconds"—the perfectly delicious but less beautiful tomatoes often sold for less at farmers" markets. Thanks to the creamy shell beans here, each serving provides 100 percent of the daily recommendation for fiber.
Speedy Ratatouille with Goat Cheese
In traditional ratatouille, vegetables simmer together until they're falling-apart tender. Here, Melissa Clark cooks them quickly in batches, so they retain their flavor and texture.
Chicken Tagine with Artichoke Hearts and Peas
To give this Moroccan stew flavor without much fat, chef Joël Robuchon simmers it in a spiced broth. Artichoke hearts add a lovely spring flavor; they're also one of the best vegetable sources of antioxidants.
Bean, Corn and Squash Stew
In his excellent version of the traditional Chilean stew porotos granados, chef Alex Aguilera uses kidney beans in place of the customary cranberry beans, then folds in fresh basil and a swirl of paprika oil.
Thai Summer Bean Stew with Chicken
This is a quintessential summer dish, with coins of corn, tender beans and chicken in a tangy basil-and-cilantro-laced coconut-curry sauce. Replacing full-fat coconut milk with a combination of light coconut milk and low-sodium broth makes the recipe less rich without sacrificing flavor. Use at least three types of beans; start with string beans, wax beans and favas and add flat Romano beans, haricots verts, cranberry beans or limas. Frozen shelled edamame make a perfect substitute for fresh fava beans.
Lemony Chickpea and Oven-Dried Tomato Stew
Oven-dried tomatoes give this simple stew an astounding depth of flavor. Serve it with greens; roasted meat or poultry like lamb, beef or chicken; or with pan-seared snapper, halibut or shrimp.