Delicious Pork Stew with String Beans
This is such a classic dish here in Slovenia. This recipe is especially great because the pork stew is:
- rich in flavor
- great for any day of the year (can be made up to 3 months ahead!)
- can be made with pork, beef, chicken or lamb
- perfect for a midweek lunch/dinner
- made in just one pot
- the meat is soft, juicy and melts in your mouth
- the sauce is creamy
The preparation is incredibly easy and it goes like this:
- Cook the onion, celery and peppers in a large pot
- Add the meat, tomatoes, and spices
- Add the string beans and stock (or water)
- Serve or freeze to have a meal for any day of the week
- To make it all even better, serve with a generous dollop of sour cream and chopped herbs (like chives or parsley)
Olive oil - Use olive oil or any other vegetable oil like sunflower oil or canola oil.
Celery - Adds a bit of sweetness. You can also use a diced carrot.
Pepper - Use any kind of pepper. We used yellow pepper because it's what we currently have in our vegetable garden.
Herbs and Spices - Thyme, bay leaf, and sweet paprika powder are the herbs and spices you are going to need in this recipe. They can be fresh or dried.
Tomatoes - Fresh tomatoes give this wonderful stew a bit of sweetness and freshness. If tomatoes aren't in season, you can use canned chopped tomatoes. However, always use tomato puree. You can make your own tomato puree from scratch, it's so good.
String beans - You can use any type of string beans, it's important that it doesn't have a lot of strings and it's always better to use young string beans.
Stock/water - Use vegetable, beef or chicken stock, or simply use water.
Can I use any other meat for this pork stew?
Yes, you absolutely can. In Slovenia, we call this dish Boranja and it's traditionally made with pork or beef (or both) meat. However, you can make it with chicken or lamb as well.
PORK - Use high-quality pork meat. The best cuts are pork shank or pork blade shoulder. The meat shouldn't be lean, so cuts like pork loin or tenderloin won't work in this recipe. Make sure to remove any vein.
BEEF - Use beef chuck or beef round or beef shank. Make sure to remove any vein. If you are going to make a beef stew with string beans, then the cooking process is a bit different. In step 3, instead of covering with a lid and cooking for 10 - 15 minutes, you need to cook for 1 hour and 30 minutes. So in total, you cook the meat for 1 hour and 30 minutes, then you add the string beans and cook for an additional 35 - 40 minutes or until the string beans are cooked.
CHICKEN - Use any boneless and skinless chicken part. The cooking process is the same as it is for the pork stew.
LAMB - Use lamb shoulder or lamb leg. The cooking process is the same as it is for the beef stew above.
String beans storing and freezing
It's best to use young string beans for this recipe, so a great way to have young string beans available all year through is to vacuum them when they are in season. This is especially great if you grow your own string beans or if you are buying them at the local farmer's market.
For this recipe, we used a Slovenian product, vacuum machine SV2000 from Status Metlika. We are honestly impressed and amazed by how simple it is to use it and especially, how powerful it is, which makes it all even simpler and quicker. We are one of those people who love to have all organized in our freezer so if you are one of those people too, then I am sure you are going to love vacuuming produce and all kinds of treats - it takes a lot less space in the freezer and you can keep everything organized. Also, if you are for example using only half of the produce, you can always vacuum it again, seal the bag and then freeze plus reuse the rest of the produce when needed. Love it.
Clean your string beans before freezing. Place a large pot of boiling salted water over medium-high heat. Add the string beans for about 30 seconds, then immediately drain and cool them under ice-cold running water to stop the process of cooking. Tap dry using a kitchen towel, then transfer to a vacuum bag. Use a vacuum machine and store it in a freezer for up to 6 months.
Pork Stew with String Beans storing and freezing
Store your Pork Stew with String Beans in an airtight container, in a fridge for up to three days, or freeze for up to 3 months. Before serving, bring the Pork Stew to a boil.
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Thanks to Status Metlika for the amazing vacuum machine and vacuum bags. All the opinions are ours and we only share our honest opinions and recommendations for great products that we actually use.