Monday, September 30, 2013

Classic Beef Stew

Oh, the temperatures are starting to drop, the sun is rising later and going down a little earlier, the season is definitely changing.  It's time to prepare for the winter evenings ahead, and comfort food is a big part of that.

I have been looking for a good beef stew recipe. One that's not hard to make, but still has good beef flavor.  I was also looking for a recipe in which the vegetables still tasted like vegetables when I served it. This recipe totally hits the mark.  Full of flavor, meat so soft your fork melts into it, and vegetables so succulent and moist. This meal has become top of the list in our house. And it's pretty easy to prepare. It's the kind of meal you can make when the weather outside in less-inviting.  You can stay inside and enjoy all of the aroma that comes from cooking this wonderful beef stew.

Classic Beef Stew

1lb roast (tip, chuck, round, etc) cut into 1in pieces
2 c water
1 c (1 can) beef broth
1/2 tsp salt
1/8 tsp pepper
1 1/2 c baby carrots or 2 med carrots, chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
2 med potatoes, peeled & chopped
1 dried bay leaf
1/2 c cold water
2 Tbs flour
salt and pepper to taste
3c cooked noodles (egg noodles, bowtie, campanelle, etc)

In a 4-qt dutch oven, brown the meat in some heated oil. Once the meat is completely browned, about 15 minutes, add the water, beef broth, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil and then turn it down to a simmer and let the meat cook for about 2 - 2 1/2 hours.

Add the vegetables and the bay leaf. Cover and allow the broth to simmer with the vegetables for another 20 - 30 minutes, depending on how soft you like your vegetables. Meanwhile, heat the water for your noodles and cook them according to the package instructions.

Mix the cold water with the flour until it's well blended. Add it to the stew and allow it to boil for a few minutes to thicken the sauce. Serve with the stew poured over the noodles. Makes about 4 servings. Enjoy!

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