Friday, December 14, 2012

Beef Stew

While I'm all for variety in my diet, I've recently come to appreciate cooking in larger quantities.  The more meals I can get out of an hour of cooking, the better!  As the temperatures start to drop, warm meals become the norm and soups/stews have been making an almost weekly occurrence.  This soup surprised me with its flavors, and because I so badly wanted to share it with you I snuck a quick picture before I brought the last serving to work for lunch!

Beef Stew w/Sweet Potatoes and Mushrooms
adapted from Joy the Baker
Serves 6

Feel free to use fresh mushrooms if you have those on hand!

3/4c white whole wheat flour (AP or whole wheat pastry will also work)
1 1/4lb stew beef (local, grass-fed if you can), cut into 3/" chunks
1/4c extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 medium onion, diced
2 carrots, peeled and diced
6 cloves of garlic, minced/pressed
3T tomato paste
1/2c red wine  (or beer)
3 medium sweet potatoes, diced
100g/3.5oz diced dried mushrooms (I used a medley from Job Lot)
1 bay leaf
3t fresh thyme, coarsely chopped (or 1t dried)
1T worcestershire sauce
8c broth (I used a mix of beef and vegetable)
1T sugar
salt and freshly ground pepper
cooked whole wheat couscous, for serving (if desired)

In a ziploc bag, add flour and season with a big pinch of salt and pepper.  Add diced beef and close the bag.   Shake until all the beef is lightly coated in flour mixture and set aside.

Heat 2T olive oil over medium heat in a large dutch oven.  Add beef in a single layer (it all might not fit) and cook until browned on each side.  Repeat with remaining beef, then remove from the pan and set aside on a plate.

Add 2T oil to the dutch oven and heat over medium-low.  Add onions and carrots and cook until onions are translucent, ~8min.  Add garlic and cook for another minute or two before adding tomato paste.  Stir well and cook another minute before deglazing the pan with wine, scraping off the browned bits from the bottom of the pan.

Add the sweet potatoes, dried mushrooms, bay leaf, thyme, worcestershire sauce and beef.  Cover with stock.  Turn the heat to low and gently simmer slightly covered for ~45min, until the veggies are cooked through.

Taste and add 1T sugar, then season with salt and pepper, adjusting as necessary.  Serve over couscous (or other grain), if desired.

Why not throw a batch of this on the stove, and while it simmers away whip up a batch of cookies?  Perfect December weekend if you ask me :)


BigAppleNosh said...

This sounds delicious!

Joanne said...

The.Boy. and I have officially submitted our student housing application to live together so I'm thinking more big batch meals are going to be in order! The stew sounds like a winner!

Emily @ A Cambridge Story said...

I totally agree on the big batch mentality, especially in the winter when you can dream up yummy stews like this. Chilis and soups have also been in the rotation a lot recently.

Delicious Dishings said...

This sounds so interesting and so hearty. Definitely a great winter meal.

Erica said...

I'm SO with you! I made a large batch of stuffed shells today and am excited because I think its going to last us longer (for more meals) than I thought ;). Beef stew is delicious (and I'm not even a big beef person). Great recipe

Kristen said...

I'm all about big hearty meals like this too...recently made a big batch of black bean soup...

Esi said...

I'm with you on making one big meal to last the week. This is perfect for the cold temps we've been having lately.

vanillasugarblog said...

I do not make beef stew any other way now--they must have sweet potatoes and/or butternut in there. Must!
Please make this rain go away

Erica said...

What a delicious stew....Comforting and rich!

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