Stews for cool autumn days: the best recipes


Root vegetables, bacon and sausage: this hearty stew warms the belly and the heart

Soups can be made from all kinds of vegetables. Combined with smoked meat according to the North German idea, this creates a hearty meal. A treat on cold winter days.

The fog coverage is low, the breeze cools your fingers. Who doesn’t want to curl up at home on days like this? Sitting on the couch with a cookbook, a steaming cup of tea in front of you and defying the fall blues.

These typical late fall days are not my favorite weather. Nevertheless, I can take something from the wet and cold weather, which makes you instinctively shrug your shoulders. Because it’s finally time for a hearty soup.

A soup: easy to make, easy to refine

Soups have been with me all my life. A soup to start was part of the Sunday menu. Maybe there was still some boiled meat left on Saturday. If it had to be quick, we added a beaten egg.

More effort, albeit on a modest scale, meant baking pancakes and cutting them into flat cakes. The garnish with fresh chives gave both variants that certain something.

With a little work, but not much skill, a soup can be made from many types of vegetables. Fry the finely chopped onion and garlic in a little oil or butter, add the prepared vegetables and stock and simmer. When the vegetables are tender, they are pureed and the soup is then seasoned.

It only takes a little to make the soup more sophisticated. A few drops of oil, lightly or firmly whipped cream, a special spice or the addition of bread croutons, chopped nuts or diced bacon bits – and the simple vegetable soup is enhanced. You don’t just like something like this as a starter before a Sunday roast, but also as an evening meal.

Use what the field gives you

Soups – when they are less liquid they are called stews – can also be considered a meal. Graubünden barley soup and goulash soup are particularly well known and not only popular with winter sports enthusiasts.

If you want to innovate with stews, you can grab whatever your heart and palate desires. I found my favorite idea in northern Germany. There, we often use in the kitchen what the field gives you: potatoes, carrots, celery and other root vegetables. For this stew, it’s the turnip that makes the dish special.

Rutabagas and turnips

There are currently many root vegetables for sale in the market and in stores. There are two types of turnips: rutabagas, also known as ground kohlrabi, and fall turnips. We also know him as Räbe, which is sculpted for the Räbeliechtlium train.

According to the description, the rutabaga has an almost round shape. Their shell is yellowish-green, sometimes reddish. The flesh is whitish to yellow and has a sweet and sour taste reminiscent of cabbage or kohlrabi. The tubers, which can weigh up to 1.5 kg, are used in cuisines in northern Germany and Scandinavia, especially for stews or as beet puree.

The fall turnip or turnip comes in a variety of shapes, ranging from flattened rounded to long conical. The color is also different, it can be black, gray, white or yellow on the outside, green or purple in the upper part of the beet. The flesh is white or yellowish. Fall white turnip is made into sour turnips in this country and is a popular and healthy winter dish. (sat)

This slightly sweet, yet earthy and spicy root vegetable, reminiscent of kohlrabi in taste, should be the main ingredient in the stew. You can supplement it with other types of vegetables: potatoes, carrots, pumpkin or leeks.

Cooking bacon makes it hearty, while sausage brings a finer taste. If you prefer a vegetarian version, you can add beans or lentils instead of bacon and sausages, for example. Of course, onions and garlic also have their place in the pot.

The stew is even better the next day

When the vegetables are prepared, most of the work is already done. Briefly sauté the vegetables in not too hot oil, add the broth and the meat – and the stew is ready.

Or almost. Because now he has to cook over a small fire. How long? Certainly an hour, better two. And another tip: it’s worth it if you’re making a lot of stew. Not just when enjoyed in a good big group. But also because it is even better reheated.

As with all stews, the ingredients combine through repeated cooking, which makes the taste more intense. It is important to ensure that the stew is reheated gently and not too hot, in order to retain as many vitamins and nutrients as possible.

Root Vegetable Stew

Ingredients for four people

  • 2 kilograms of root vegetables (e.g. turnips, potatoes, carrots)
  • 2 onions
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 800 g meat (e.g. bacon, sausage, Schüblig)
  • 1 liter of vegetable broth
  • 1 sprig of marjoram and 1 sprig of thyme
  • A few juniper berries, a little nutmeg
  • Salt pepper


  • Chop onions and garlic, not too small, fry in oil
  • Cut the vegetables into medium-sized cubes, add them to the onions and sauté briefly
  • Deglaze with broth
  • Add the marjoram, thyme and juniper berries, season with grated nutmeg
  • Place the meat on it
  • Cover the pan and simmer over low heat for at least an hour
  • Before serving, season with salt and pepper to taste


  • Use other types of vegetables like leeks and mushrooms (mushrooms, king oyster mushrooms).
  • Adding other types of meat or sausages (eg cheese sausages) to the soup
  • Vegetarian variant: cook broad beans or lentils with the vegetables. In this case, however, a flavor carrier is missing and the stew does not taste typical

Ostbröckli author Sabine Camedda with a plate full of homemade stew.

Ostbröckli author Sabine Camedda with a plate full of homemade stew.

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