Numeroff (Chimps Don't Wear Glasses, 1995, etc.) and Saltzberg (This is a Great Place for a Hot Dog Stand, 1995, etc.) have concocted a rhyming quest for stew that will elicit giggles and stimulate salivary glands. Hunger for world-famous stew is why a young woman and her poodle have come into a restaurant, but it's the one thing they just can't have; it was devoured earlier by a busload of tourists from Spain. The waiter offers noodles, ham nuggets and peas, and gravy and fish, but his two diners demand stew. As the stew is the creation of the waiter's grandmother, the trio head over to her house, but Grandma is heading out for bowling night. That cold fact puts an end to dreams of stew and changes the nature of their pursuit. The illustrations bop along in sync with the light verse and occasionally expand into full-blown musical sets, complete with a chorus line of dancing chefs. The rhymes and Big Apple setting recall Debra and Sal Barraccas's The Adventures of Taxi Dog (1990), with an airier touch. It's satisfying fare, all except for the microwave ending: Those ravenous would-be diners ignore their hunger pangs to go bowling.