The Cupboard Stew

Central PA Live

Chef Dallas Pursley from Balance Restaurant shares his recipe for The Cupboard Stew.


The Cupboard Stew


The base could equal rice or pasta depending on what you have available.  In this case, we are using Basmati Rice, a long grain white rice. 

1 cup of rice

2 cups of water

2 teaspoons of salt and pepper mixture – 7 to 1 ratio salt to pepper

Bring rice and water to a boil in a medium pot and add seasoning.  Once boiling, place on lid and reduce heat to a simmer for 10-15 minutes depending on the type of rice or until fully cooked.  Remove from heat. 


1 tablespoon of olive oil or cooking oil

½ of an onion, yellow or red, medium diced

1 tablespoon of minced garlic

1 cup of fresh or canned mushrooms

¼ cup of green chilies fresh or canned

1 ½ cups of canned beans, your choice

1 ½ cups of fresh or frozen chopped greens

1 tablespoon of salt and pepper mix – 7 to 1 ratio

1 ounce of white wine, optional

Juice of 1 lemon, optional
2 tablespoons of fresh chopped herbs OR 2 teaspoons of dried herbs, your choice

½ cup of vegetable stock or water

1 tablespoon of olive oil or cooking oil

4 ounce chicken breast optional

1 ½ tablespoons of salt and pepper mixture


If you are using chicken or another animal protein, add oil to medium/high heat skillet then dry protein with paper towel, season with salt and pepper and then sear your protein for approximately 3.5 minutes per side.  Remove from heat, place on cookie sheet and finish in the oven at 400 degrees for approximately 10 minutes or until an internal temperature of 165 degrees F has been reached.   Allow protein to rest on a cooling rack for a minimum of two minutes prior to slicing.

While protein is cooking add oil to another skillet for the stew.  Begin sautéing your onions, mushrooms, garlic and chilies.  Sauté for 3-5 minutes until product starts to become translucent.  Add salt and pepper and then deglaze with white wine then add in the beans and cook for 8 minutes while stirring consistently so the product does not stick or burn.

Now add your greens and your stock.  Turn down to a simmer and allow that to cook for approximately 10 minutes.  Stir occasionally so all product cooks evenly.  Then finish with your fresh or dried herbs.   Then use lemon juice.

One can serve this dish via family style or individually by simply placing the rice or pasta in the bottom of your serving dish topping it with the stew and then slicing your animal protein and placing on the top in a shingle fashion.   Serve with a cold beer or glass of wine and ENJOY!


Balance Restaurant is located at 415 Main Street in downtown Johnstown. Visit them online or on Facebook for more information.

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