Medieval italian stew (pie in a pipkin)

Yield: 1 Batch


  • 3 lb Stew beef; cut in 1/2" cubes

  • 2 md Onions; chopped Cooking oil

  • 1/2 c Raisins

  • 1/4 ts Each cloves and cinnamon

  • 1/4 ts Each nutmeg mace and pepper

  • 1 tb White vinegar; or to taste


Salt; to taste Brown the beef in a skillet in a small quantity of oil. Place browned beef and its juices in a stewpot. Add more oil (if necessary) to the skillet; saute onions until tender and translucent. Add onions to stewpot. Add raisins and spices to the meat mixture along with a small quantity of water (approximately 1/2 cup). There should be just enough water to prevent scorching and to help form the gravy. Bring stew to a boil and reduce immediately to a simmer. Simmer covered until meat is tender (about 1-1/2 to 2 hours). Stir occasionally. Add water as necessary. When beef is cooked add vinegar and salt. Cook a few minutes more. Carroll-Mann wrote: "This is a recipe I adapted from a 16th century translation of a medieval Italian cookbook. The recipe is called "Pie in a Pipkin" which means (crustless) meat pie in a stewpot. It has a nice thick gravy and a sweet/tart flavor." From: Robin Carroll-Mann in Electronic format by Cathy Harned.

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