navarin a sort of stew of lamb or mutton containing vegetables. During the winter months these will standardly be potatoes and onions, but in the spring the new season’s vegetables (carrots, turnips, beans, peas, etc.) are used to make a navarin printanier (‘spring navarin’). The French for ‘turnip’ is navet, which is probably the source of navarin. E. S. Dallas’s comment in Kettner’s Book of the Table (1877) suggests that the term was not of great antiquity: ‘Navarin is a stupid word which has arisen from a desire to get rid of the unintelligible and misleading name Haricot de mouton, without falling back on the vulgar phrase, Ragoût de mouton.’
© the Estate of Alan Davidson 1999, 2006, 2014 © in the Editor’s contribution to the second and third editions, Oxford University Press 2006, 2014.