Basic Sabbath Stew

Basic Sabbath Stew

This easy stew recipe, otherwise known as cholent, is a Jewish staple most commonly served on the Jewish sabbath. This hearty combination of vegetables and meat will leave all satisfied with the meal.


Cholent may be made in a slow cooker, a heavy pot set on the stove or in the oven. Prior to Shabbat, the Jewish Sabbath, oven temperature should be reduced to very low. Cholent can also be cooked conventionally as a stew on top of the stove for about 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or in the pressure cooker for about 45 minutes. Water or liquid level should be high enough to cover all ingredients and no higher than within an inch of the top of the pot. Before sundown on Friday night, place the cholent in a preheated oven and let it heat until the following day. A few hours before lunch, check the cholent -- if it is too moist, uncover it and leave it in the oven to dry. Correct the seasonings as desired.


Cooking MethodPressure Cooker, Slow Cooker


  • 1/2 cup medium barley
  • 1/2 cup small white lima beans
  • 1/2 cup red kidney beans
  • 6 small red potatoes
  • 1 1/2 pound brisket, cut into large chunks
  • 5 beef marrow or neck bones
  • 1 onion, chopped fine
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped fine or put through a press
  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • Cold water
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, freshly ground


  1. Brown meat and onions in saucepan or place meat and onions beneath oven broiler for a few minutes.
  2. Rinse barley in a sieve under cold running water, until water runs clear. Pick over beans and rinse thoroughly. Peel potatoes and cut into rounds.
  3. Add barley, beans, potatoes, bones and garlic to meat and onions in the saucepan. Add 6-7 cups cold water, or enough to cover, and bring to a boil over high heat. Season with salt and pepper and simmer for one hour. Skim froth as it rises to the surface.
  4. Place in oven on a very low temperature until done.

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