Southern New England saw it's first major snowfall of season last week and with that I felt compelled to make something warm and cozy for dinner. So with 10 inches of snow came a big pot of beef stew.
After only having made beef stew once prior to this, I have to admit that I'm still honing my skills with this one. Overall, the stew came out great; the veggies and potatoes were nice and soft, but the meat was a wee bit tough, most likely because I mistakenly allowed the stew to boil in the pot rather than simmer. Ah well...I'll pay more attention next time.
source: Smells Like Home
- 1 1/2 lbs stew meat
- 2 tbsp olive oil
- 4 carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4" thick
- 3 celery stalks, chopped
- 2 medium onions, chopped
- 1 lb white potatoes, peeled and cut into about 1" cubes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- approx 1 tbsp thyme (I used fresh)
- approx 2 tsp rosemary (I used dried)
- 1 tsp Kosher salt
- 1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
- 4 1/2 to 5 cups chicken stock
- 1/2 cup uncooked barley (optional)
- cornstarch (if necessary)
- Heat oil in a large deep stockpot or dutch oven (I used 7 1/4 qt dutch oven).
- In a large Ziploc bag, toss meat in flour until well-coated. When oil is heated, cook meat for about 5 minutes or until slightly browned. Remove from pot and set aside. Add vegetables and cook for 7-10 minutes or until vegetables begin to soften. Add garlic, thyme, rosemary, salt and pepper and cook for 5 more minutes.
- Return the beef to the pot and combine with vegetable mixture. Add chicken stock and barley. Simmer over low heat for 1 hour. If after 1 hour the stew hasn't thicken, raise the heat and stir in a mixture of 1 tbsp cornstarch and 2 tsp cold water to the pot. Allow stew to come to a steady low boil and allow stew to thicken - should take about 5 minutes. Repeat the cornstarch step until the stew thickens to desired consistency.
Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 1 hr 15 minutes