Thursday, February 7, 2013

Rustic Beef Stew Recipe


Lately our weather has been refusing to reach a temperature above the single digits, and often in the negative with the wind chill. Yes, brrrrr. On one particularly blustery day, I decided beef stew was the best solution to warm me inside and out.  

Normally I would brown the beef and the the rest in a crockpot for the day, but I thought would only serve the "rustic" quality of my beef stew vision if it were braised on the stovetop and simmering all day long. What a great idea it was. :)

Rustic Beef Stew Recipe
Makes 5-6 servings

1 pound stew meat
3 Tbsp red wine vinegar or balsamic or your favorite wine
3 potatoes, cut into large chunks
3 or 4 carrots, cut into large chunks
2 stalks celery, cut into large chunks
1 onion, cut into wedges
3 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp thyme
1 quart beef or vegetable stock 
2 bay leaves

Heat a 6 quart heavy bottom pot over medium heat and drizzle lightly with oil. Once preheated, add the chunks of stew meat and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Let brown on one side before turning to the second (third and fourth) sides. Pour in 2 to 3 Tbsp vinegar to de-glaze the pan, scraping up bits of meat as you stir. Add in potatoes, carrots, celery, onion and garlic and cover the pot, allowing the moisture level to build, cooking the vegetables. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and thyme. Stir occasionally. Allow to cook 5 to 10 minutes before adding in the beef stock and bay leaves. Bring to a boil for 5 minutes, and then simmer for up to 3 hours. 

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