Monday, May 18, 2020

Hungry for delicious beef stew

Occasionally I get a hankering for something that I cooked when my family was growing up. Of course, it was in larger quantities than I need these days, but still I sometimes just simply get hungry for some old fashioned comfort food.

So the other day when I was putting together an online grocery order that I would pick up nearly a week later, I thought of stew. What's not to like about a good pot of stew beef slow cooked for hours. Of course, sometimes it is a flat out bust when the meat isn't tender. But I had high hopes.

I ordered a pound of rather expensive stew beef. Angus beef. Grass fed. That's good stuff!

Of course, you don't always get what you order these days. It can be a missing item (sold out) or it can be a substitute. But I had faith that it would be the good stuff and would be in-the-bag. And it was! Not only was it there, the quantity was 1 1/2 pounds! Banner shopping day!

Since it has been a long time since I've cook stew and since this was such a premium item, I Googled for tips. Here's what I decided to do.......

I put a bit of plain flour in a nice, clean brown paper sack (no seasonings). Tossed in the chunks of beef a few at a time. Shook the bag after each addition. When all the beef had been coated with the flour. I placed a few chunks, spaced a bit apart so they would brown nicely, in my slow cooker that sautes as well as steams and slow cooks. A fabulous piece of kitchen ware to own.

I browned them at 400 degrees in 1/2 stick of butter and about the same amount of extra virgin olive oil. I like the taste of butter and I like the health benefits of olive oil. So I strike a good compromise. As each batch was browned, I gently lifted the pieces out - avoiding piercing them because I didn't want to let those juices escape.

When all was browned, I returned them all to the slow cooker. I added one envelope of Lipton Onion Soup Mix (beefy one) and one standard size can of Muir Glenn Organic Fire Roasted Tomatoes. I rinsed the can with about 1/3 of a can of water. Stirred the mixture gently and put the lid on.

I simmered and slow cooked this for about 3 1/2 to 4 hours. I didn't keep track.

This makes a rich, thick stew that will go with lots of veggies and perhaps rice or mashed potatoes.

I ate some and it is rich, tasty, and very very tender! I share some with my son and his wife.

Who are you going to bless with a bit of comfort food today? What will you cook?

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