When it starts to get cold out there is nothing better for dinner than a nice, hearty stew.
One of my favorite stews comes from the Williams-Sonoma Comfort Food cookbook.
The recipe, called hearty beef stew, has a delicious sauce and the beef is nice and tender. For extra flavor I like to add sauteed mushrooms and a dash of red wine to the recipe.
To make this recipe you'll need:
- 3 lbs boneless beef chuck, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 4 slices of apple smoked bacon, chopped
- 2 tbsp. canola oil
- Salt and pepper
- 1 yellow onion, chopped
- 3 carrots, chopped
- 3 stalks of celery, sliced into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
- 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
- 6 tbsp. all purpose flour
- 4 c. beef stock
- 2 tbsp. tomato paste
- 1 tbsp parsley
- 1 tsp. each of thyme and rosemary
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 lb. red skinned potatoes, chopped
- 2 c. sliced portobello mushrooms
To start, cook the bacon in the oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. Once the bacon is crisp and brown, used a slotted spoon to remove it from the pot. Place on paper towel to drain and set aside. Pour the fat from the pot into a heat-safe bowl. Return two tablespoons of fat to the pot and heat over medium-high heat.
Add the beef cubes and brown, season with salt and pepper. Once the beef is browned, remove from the pot and set aside. Add an additional two tablespoons of fat to the pot and heat over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic.
Cook the mix, stirring occasionally, until the onions begin to soften. Stir in the butter and let it melt, then add the flour and mix well. Gradually stir in the stock, and then stir in the tomato paste, the parsley, thyme, rosemary and bay leaf. Return the beef to the pot and bring it to a boil.
Cover the pot, and place it in the oven at 325 degrees. Cook for one-and-a-half hours. While the stew cooks in the oven, slice the potatoes and saute the mushrooms. After it's cooked, place the potatoes and sauteed mushrooms into the pot. Mix well and add a splash of red wine if you'd like.
Cook for another 45 minutes, or until the potatoes are tender. Add the bacon back into the pot and serve warm. Enjoy!