Tuesday, January 25, 2011

African Groundnut Stew

This stew's secret ingredients is the peanut butter-- gives it a wonderful flavor. My husband told me he never would have known it had peanut butter in it unless I told him, but there is a unique and "gotta have more" flavor that it adds. It is also good with many different kinds of meat. This from a recipe by Bob Kellermann and adapted by Paula Deen and then further adapted by myself with another similar recipe.


  • 2 pounds stew beef, cut into 1-inch cubes (or you may use lamb or chicken meat cubes and substitute chicken bouillon cubes)
  • 1/2 cup flour to coat meat
  • 1/4 cup oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 beef bouillon cubes
  • 1-2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper (optional)
  • 1-2 teaspoon chili powder (I used 2 tsp)
  • 2 tablespoons curry powder
  • 1-2 Tbsp dried parsley
  • 4 cups water
  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 cup chopped onions
  • 1 large bundle of fresh collard greens, (may also use kale, spinach or other greens) washed, drained, and thinly sliced (or frozen, chopped greens- 1 pound)
  • 2-3 carrots, chunked- may use any other root vegetables
  • 2 large white potatoes and/or sweet potatoes (optional)
  • 1 (28-ounce) can tomato puree
  • 1/2- 1 cup peanut butter (I used the larger amount and it was much tastier but not too strong. I even used chunky PB.)


  • In a Dutch oven, dredge the meat and flour and brown in the oil. 
  • Add the bouillon cubes, salt, crushed red pepper, chili powder, curry powder, parsley and water. Stir and bring to a rapid boil,  reducing the heat and simmering covered for 1 hour. 
  • Cut the bacon into small pieces and fry in a skillet until all of the fat is rendered. Remove the bacon from the skillet and set aside. 
  • Saute the greens and the onions in the bacon fat for 4 minutes, stirring constantly, adding in the garlic part way through. 
  • Add the sauteed greens and onions along with the tomato puree, chunked potatoes and any other root vegetables, reserved bacon (optional), and peanut butter to the stew. Stir and simmer covered for 1 hour. If it seems to not have enough liquid, add another cup of water/broth while it cooks. You may also need to add a little more seasoning/salt since the potatoes absorb a lot. Serve with rice.  (Note: if using frozen greens, you won't need to cook them with the onions in the bacon fat quite as long.)

This can be easily adapted for a slow cooker, as well.

Alternative method-

Recently, I cooked the roast beef a couple days before at a very low temperature (250 degrees) for about 4 hours with onion soup mix and beef drippings from the pan that included seasonings from when I first browned it. Since I still had a large amount of meat left over, I used most of it to make this stew. Instead of flouring and browning the meat as above, I just chopped the cooked meat up into small pieces. Meanwhile, in a large soup pot- approximately 10-12 quarts, I browned 2 large onions and 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced very fine, with the oil, curry and chili powder. After the onions were softened and the seasoning had time to cook in the oil, I then added a 1 pound bag of frozen chopped collard greens. After these thawed in the pot and cooked for a couple minutes with the onion/garlic mixture, then I added the meat, 2 large white and 2 good sized sweet potatoes chopped into chunks, tomato puree and water/beef broth liquids, as well as the parsley and crushed red pepper (optional) and peanut butter- basically everything else. I did not bother with the bacon, instead just cooked the onions with the seasonings and oil. (The bacon adds much flavor, but also takes more time than I felt I had.) Because the meat was already cooked, I just needed to cook it on low temperature long enough to get the potatoes soft enough to eat- approximately 30 minutes. However, you need to stir this regularly so it does not burn or stick to the bottom.

Mmm good- and really not a hard meal to put together with leftover meat.


  1. I was intrigued by the african stew with peanut butter; still am and one of these days I will get down to it and make it! At least now I know where to look!

  2. Just made this and its fantasic! Perfect blance of all the flavors. Even my 16 year old loved it and she said it was "werid" to put peanut butter in a stew.

    1. I'm so glad you gave it a try! It does seem like a crazy addition to put with a meat stew but is actually a popular addition to sauces/soups in African food and also Thai food.


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