Thursday, August 30, 2012

Beef Stew

Ok - its still summer, and its hot outside - but this morning was brisk, and fall is coming and its finally my turn to pick dinner. Usually I make whatever my husband wants, often my daughter also makes her culinary desires known ... once in a blue moon I pick. Today I want beef stew. Its easily one of my favorite meals, and I hardly ever make it. My husband likes to shy away from beef - and summer isn't exactly the time one thinks of stew - but I still love it. Still, you have to do it right. Countless ways to do it right - if your pressed for time use a tender cut of beef, costs more but the stew will be great. Today, however, I have time so I am slowly and lovingly making an old fashioned beef stew.

I have over 2 lbs of stew meat. Tough and cheap - but I coated it with seasoned flour, took the time to brown it in batches!! Now I am letting it simmer in beef broth enriched with thyme, rosemary and bay leaf - going to add red skinned potato chunks, carrots, celery - oh and of course already browned the onion, garlic and some shallot - let it cook all day and it will taste amazing. Might serve this over rice, maybe egg noodles - I know, I know - there are potatoes and we don't need more starch - don't need it but it will taste great!

Old Fashioned Beef Stew 

  • 2 lbs beef stew meat cut into 1. inch cubes
  • flour, seasoned with salt and pepper and garlic powder
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 1-2 shallots chopped
  • Olive oil - 1/4 cup of so
  • 6-8 red skinned potatoes, cut into 1" cubes
  • 3 stalks celery, cut into pieces
  • 1 lb carrots, cut into 1" slices
  • beef broth
  • rosemary
  • thyme
  • bay leaf
  • salt
  • pepper

Add about 2 Tbs of olive oil to a big cast iron pot, coat beef in seasoned flour and brown (in batches - do not crowd, do not skip this step!). Remove beef to plate, or pan or counter top...add onion and brown, add garlic and shallot, add about 1/4 cup of seasoned flour and stir - add 1 cup beef broth and stir - cook for about 2 mins. Add 32 oz beef broth, return beef to pot add herbs. Bring to a boil, lower to a simmer and cook partially covered for an hour or a few hours if you have the time. Add carrots, celery and potatoes more salt and pepper - cook for another hour or so. Taste. Adjust seasoning, add some fresh herbs if you have them - rosemary (not too heavy) parsley, more salt and pepper. Add frozen green peas if you want.

Serve this in a bowl, or over rice or over egg noodles or with biscuits - happy cooking!!

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