« Miss Cindy's Sensations

Everything Kentucky Derby! (including a recipe for Kentucky Burgoo)

by Cindy Rippe

Tomorrow is the first Saturday in May, so that means it's time for the running of The Kentucky Derby!!!!! The most famous horse race in America has long been called "the most exciting 2 minutes in sports!" It's one of my favorite days of the year, because I like to celebrate by getting together with friends, sip on some mint juleps and of course, wear our Derby Hats! Last year I got to travel to Kentucky for a wedding, and found a beautiful hat (on sale) and I'm so excited that I finally get to wear my hat somewhere! Here's a sneak peak of my Derby hat!

The official food for The Kentucky Derby is burgoo---a traditional southern stew containing beef, chicken, pork and veggies. Burgoo dates back to before the Civil War and as legend has it, it was invented by a French chef. And like most stews, it's even better the next day. I have been asked to cook burgoo tomorrow at Fresh Horses Saloon in Harrisburg SD--for their Kentucky Derby Party - Party kicks off at 3:00 pm - Derby starts at 4:00 pm, so dust off your Derby duds and join us for a fun afternoon!! They will have prizes for Best Dressed Male, Best Dressed Female, Best Derby Hat Male, and Best Derby Hat Female!! And there will be a50/50 Raffle with all proceeds going directly to Camp Gilbert for kids with juvenile diabetes. It's going to be a delicious and charming day!

Ok, now here's the recipe!!! This recipe will feed a lot! So if you need to, cut it in half....or you can have some delicious leftovers!


  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3-4 pounds pork shoulder or country ribs, cut into large pieces (3 to 4 inches wide)
  • 2-3 pounds chuck roast, stew meat, or other inexpensive cut of beef, cut into large pieces (3 to 4 inches wide)
  • 3-5 chicken legs or thighs (bone-in)
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, chopped
  • 2 stocks of celery, chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 quart chicken stock or broth (I like to use "Better than Bullion")
  • 1 quart beef stock or broth
  • 1 28-ounce can of crushed tomatoes
  • 2 large potatoes
  • 1 bag of frozen corn (about a pound)
  • 1 bag of frozen lima beans (about 14 ounces)
  • Salt and pepper
  • 4-8 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • Tabasco or other hot sauce on the side


1 Heat vegetable oil on medium-high heat in a large soup pot (at least 8 quart size). Salt the meats well on all sides. When the oil is shimmering hot, working in batches brown all the meats. Do not crowd the pan or the meat will steam and not brown well. Do not move the meat while browning a side. Let the meat pieces get well seared. Remove the browned meats to a bowl.

2 Add the onions, carrots, celery and green pepper to the pot and brown them. If necessary, add a little more oil to the pot. After a few minutes of cooking, sprinkle salt over the vegetables.

3 When the vegetables are well browned, add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more, until fragrant. Add back the meats, and the chicken and beef broths and the tomatoes, stir to combine. Bring to a simmer, cover, reduce the heat and simmer gently for 2 hours.

4 Uncover and remove the meat pieces. Strip the chicken off the bone and discard skin if you want. Break the larger pieces of meat into smaller, more manageable pieces. The reason you did not do this at first is because the meats stay juicier when they cook in larger pieces. Return all the meat pieces to the pot and bring it up to a strong simmer.

5 Peel and cut the potatoes into chunks about the same size as the meat pieces. Add them to the stew and cook till done, about 45 minutes. When the potatoes are done, add the Worcestershire sauce, mix well and taste for salt. Add more Worcestershire sauce to taste if needed.

6 Add the corn and lima beans. Mix well and cook for at least 10 minutes, or longer if youd like. The longer it cooks, the better it tastes. Add salt and more Worcestershire if needed.

Now all you need is a tasty mint Julep to go with your burgoo!! Here's how to make one.