The traditional Karelian stew only contains two to three types of meat (sometimes with the addition of variety meats), water and salt.
Only these few simple ingredients are needed to produce a truly flavourful stew.
According to one's liking, additional ingredients like allspice, pepper and bay leaf, onion and root vegetables like carrots or rutabaga
may also be added to the stew. The stew is best when baked for a long time at a low temperature.
about 400 - 500 g beef top loin or round (eg silverside, topside or knuckle roast)
about 350 g lamb (eg brisket, shoulder)
about 350 g pork (eg top loin or kassler)
about 300 - 350 g piece of beef liver
(1 - 2 marrowbone slices)
(a few slices of fresh, fatty side pork)
(2 - 3 medium carrots)
(2 - 3 medium onions)
about 10 allspice berries
about 10 black pepper berries
about 2 bay leaves
In this recipe, the lamb may be omitted and replaced with pork and liver. Also, you may replace part of the liver with kidneys and/or heart. If you are using kassler pork, note that it is
fattier than top loin.
Cut the meats and the liver (or kidneys/heart) in chunky pieces. If using vegetables, peel and cut them in chunky pieces as well. To make the stew more flavourful, you may brown the meats (but not the variety meats) and the vegetables quickly in a bit of butter in a hot skillet.
Layer the meats (and the marrowbones and vegetables, if using any) in a deep, large pot, adding some salt, whole pepper and allspice berries and the bay leaves between the layers. Place some of the fattiest pieces, like the kassler, on top.
If you are using side pork, arrange the slices on the top as well.
Pour some cold water in the pot, just enough to almost cover the ingredients. Cook the stew, uncovered, at 125 °C for about 1½ to 5 hours, or until the meats are thoroughly tender and succulent. The cooking temperature must not exceed 150 °C. Mix the stew a couple of times during cooking.
Serve the Karelian stew with potato puree or boiled potatoes and sugared lingonberries or lingonberry jam, pickled gherkins and/or pickled beetroots.
Recipe source: family recipe.