TASTY BOOYAH, BURGOO & GUMBO
Unique, region-specific tastes from around the U.S.
Traditional meat stews have existed since before the written word. Huntergatherers worldwide would boil what they could find in a hollowed rock, an animal skin or, later, in clay pots. Different regions of the world developed different styles of stew using local ingredients.
As the United States was settled, immigrants from around the world arrived here with their own stew recipes. They used the same recipes with ingredients from their new home to make new regional dishes. While these new stews feature distinct ingredients, they share a few similarities, too. Chief among these is the inclusion of locally sourced meat and produce. Since these stews were often meant to feed a large crowd, they regularly included several meats, with each family supplying a small amount of whatever was on hand.
Because of this community involvement, cooking up stew drew crowds from all around. In time, these gatherings became regular festivals. Recipes were further refined, and regional dishes were born. Let’s sample some of these regional stews and their origins, and I’ll provide a few recipes for you and your family to try at home.