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horse and rabbit stew

A situation comprised of both crude or unpleasant things as well as those which are pleasing or beneficial, usually with the former in greater proportion to the latter. Used especially in reference to economics or business. The prime minister's plan for the economic recovery is little more than horse and rabbit stew, with a few token stimulus incentives greatly outweighed by draconian austerity measures.
See also: and, horse, rabbit, stew

get (oneself) into a stew (over someone or something)

Fig. to be worried or upset about someone or something. Please don't get yourself into a stew over Walter. Liz is the kind of person who gets into a stew over little problems.
See also: get, stew

*in a stew (about someone or something)

Fig. upset or bothered about someone or something. (*Typically: be ~; get [into] ~.) I'm in such a stew about my dog. She ran away last night. Now, now. Don't get in a stew. She'll be back when she gets hungry.
See also: stew

stew in one's own juice

Fig. to be left alone to suffer one's anger or disappointment. John has such a terrible temper. When he got mad at us, we just let him go away and stew in his own juice. After John stewed in his own juice for a while, he decided to come back and apologize to us.
See also: juice, stew

Too many cooks spoil the stew.

 and Too many Cooks spoil the broth.
Prov. Cliché Too many people trying to manage something simply spoil it. Let's decide who is in charge around here. Too many cooks spoil the stew. Everyone is giving orders, but no one is following them! Too many cooks spoil the broth.
See also: cook, many, spoil, stew

be in a stew

to be worried and confused about something She was in a stew over the party arrangements.
See also: stew

leave somebody to stew

  also let somebody stew
if you leave someone to stew, you leave them to worry about something bad that has happened or something stupid they have done I could have said a few comforting words and made him feel better but I thought I'd let him stew a while instead.
See also: leave, stew

stew in your own juice/juices

if you leave someone to stew in their own juice, you leave them to worry about something bad that has happened or something stupid they have done She'll calm down - just leave her to stew in her own juices for a bit.
See also: juice, stew

in a stew

Agitated, alarmed, or anxious. For example, Mary was in a stew about how her cake was going to turn out. It is also put as get in or into a stew , as in Every Saturday the minister got in a stew about Sunday's sermon. This expression transfers the mixture of meat and vegetables constituting a stew to overheated mixed emotions. [c. 1800]
See also: stew

stew in one's own juice

Suffer the consequences of one's actions, as in He's run into debt again, but this time we're leaving him to stew in his own juice. This metaphoric term alludes to cooking something in its own liquid. Versions of it, such as fry in one's own grease, date from Chaucer's time, but the present term dates from the second half of the 1800s.
See also: juice, stew


1. n. a drinking bout. These frequent stews must stop. You will ruin your health.
2. n. a drunkard. There are three stews sleeping in the alley.
3. Go to stewed (up).
4. n. a stewardess or steward on an airplane. (Although officially replaced by flight attendat, this term and steward(ess) are still in use.) My sister is a stew for a major airline.
5. in. to fret. I spent most of last night stewing about my job.
6. n. a fretful state. Don’t work yourself into a stew.

stew bum

n. a drunkard; an alcoholic. You’re going to end up a stew bum if you don’t lay off the moonshine.
See also: bum, stew

stewed (up)

and stew
mod. alcohol intoxicated. (see also stew (sense 1).) The kid was stewed up and scared to death of what his parents were going to do to him.
See also: stewed, up



stew zoo

An apartment house in which many female flight attendants lived. Back in prepolitically correct days, female flight attendants were called “stewardesses” and had the reputation for being attractive and, even better to the male mind, “fun” (Frank Sinatra's hit ballad “Come Fly with Me” became something of an anthem). Stewardesses (or a many self-styled hip males called them “stewardii”) shared apartments, a rentsaving arrangement that appealed to their lifestyle because one or more was usually traveling. Apartment buildings in large cities, especially ones with easy access to airports, that attracted the young women were known as “stew zoos.”
See also: stew, zoo
References in periodicals archive ?
Roasting and stewing beef and frying and grilling steaks were all substantially up on the same period in 2007.
6% higher than in February 2007 and stewing beef 5.
Stewing or braising are simple but effective ways of cooking meat.
INGREDIENTS (serves 4) # 1 1 /2lb stewing steak, preferably shoulder # 1 /2lb shallots or button onions, peeled # 1 /2lb button mushrooms # 1 /2lb carrots, peeled and chopped
It's stewing steak and sometimes lamb, with carrots, spuds andgravy.
Stewing is a moist-heat method, and the meat should be fully immersed in liquid.
No matter whether you are braising or stewing, the meat is gently simmered in the tasty stock to produce succulent juices that will warm up the coldest of days.
Lightly flour meat, heat oil in a large heavy stewing pan or casserole dish.