Monday, January 16, 2012

The Best Beef Stew

I've had a roast in my freezer for a couple weeks now and decided it was time to finally use it. I personally would rather have a stew than a roast- its more flavors!- so I have trimmed my roast down to about 1.5 inch peices for this stew. The original recipe calls for some ingredients that I know we all don't have on hand so, I've left those out or made substitutions.

This stew takes about 2.5 hours to cook so make sure you have time, or you can adjust and make it in a slow cooker. Also, make sure you have a good red wine on hand for this stew since the flavor of the wine will affect the outcome of the flavor of the stew.

Lets get started!

Best Beef Stew
 2 Garlic Cloves, minced
1 T tomato paste
1 4 lb boneless beef chuck-eye roast, fat trimmed, cut into 1.5 inch pieces
2 T veg oil
1 Large onion, halved through the root end and sliced 1/8 inch thick
4 Carrots, peeled and cut into 1 inch pieces
1/4 C all purpose flour
2 Cups red wine
2 Cups chicken broth
2 Bay leaves
4 Sprigs fresh thyme
4 ounces salt pork (I am using bacon since I don't have salt pork lying round my fridge)
1 lb yukon gold potaotes, scrubbed and cut into 1 inch pieces
1/2 C water
1 C frozen peas, thawed
Salt and Pepper

Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 300 degrees. Combine garlic in a small bowl with a pinch of coarse salt, use the back of a fork or knife to form into a paste. Stir in tomato paste and set mixture aside.

Pat meat dry with paper towels. Do not season. Heat 1 T veg oil in a large, heavy bottomed Dutch oven over high heat until just starting to smoke. Add half of beef and cook until well browned on all sides, about 8 minutes total, reducing heat if oil begins to smoke or if the bits on the bottom begin to burn. Transfer beef to a large plate. Repeat with remaining 1 T veg oil and remaining half of beef, leaving second batch of meat in pot after browning.

Reduce heat to medium and return first batch of beef to pot. Add onion and carrots to Dutch oven and stir to combine with beef. Cook, scraping bottom of pan to loosen any browned bits, until onion is softened, 1-2 minutes. Add garlic/tomato paste mixture and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, until no dry

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