Monday, December 12, 2011

Dinner Tonight: Stew


I'm not a big "stew" person.  My dad looooooves stew...I've always thought it was chewy and blah...until now.  Almost two years ago (when I was 9 months pregnant), I got to craving me some stew, so my mother-in-law sent me her recipe.  I made it, loved it, and have been making it ever since.  It's super, super easy.  It's made in one pot (which I love) and it's so hearty and warm on a chilly evening.  Even if you think you're not a "stew" person, give this a try.  It converted me.

Shopping List
1 tablespoon veggie oil
one pound or so stew meat (it's in the meat section, by the ground beef and it actually says "stew meat")
4 cups water
2 tablespoons honey
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, chopped
2 bay leaves (fresh or dried work)
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 cup baby carrots (or 2 large carrots chopped)
2 Idaho potatoes, chopped
1 1/2 tablespoon corn starch
1 1/2 tablespoon water

In a large (oven proof) Dutch oven (that's a fancy term for "big pot with lid"), brown stew meat in veggie oil until brown all over (5-7 minutes).  Add in next 10 ingredients (plus plenty of salt and pepper), cover with lid and either cook at 275 degrees in the oven 5-6 hours or cook on top of stove about 2 hours (with the lid on as well).

If you're cooking the stew all day in the oven, then about one hour before you're ready to eat, add in the carrots and potatoes, cover and return to oven to finish cooking. 

If you're cooking the stew on the stove top, then about 30 minutes before you're ready to eat, add in the carrots and potatoes, cover and finish cooking on the stove.

Regardless which method you use, about 10 minutes before you're ready to serve, stir the corn starch and water together in a little bowl until combined.  Remove the pot from the oven (if it's there) and set it back on the stove top.  Uncover and add in corn starch mixture.  Turn heat on stove up to medium-high and let the stew bubble away uncovered 10 minutes, stirring occasionally (the corn starch mixture will thicken the stew up).

Ladle into bowls and serve.  This could convert even the biggest stew cynic.


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9 comments:

Aubs said...

came here tonight looking for some hearty cold weather dinners and of course you never disappoint! making this one this weekend!! and fun bonus? another meal that uses my dutch oven i got while back home in texas in the fall! (hubby wasn't sold on the necessity of it. he's slowly coming around!) ;)

Karla said...

If you use the stove top method and cook for 2 hours, what temperature do you cook it at???? I've been trying your recipes a lot lately and we've loved every single one! I know it's a hot summer day, but tonight calls for this stew! I'm excited to try it!

Mix and Match Mama said...

Cook on low!

Chrissy said...

Where are those dumplings that need to be on top?! ;)

Amy Miller said...

How would you cook this in a crockpot?

Mix and Match Mama said...

I've tried this is the slow cooker and it's not great. I wouldn't cook it that way. The oven and/or stove really thickens it up and mellows the flavors...the slow cooker just doesn't do it.

Susan said...

I cooked this a few weeks ago when it was so nasty in my part of Texas, it was wonderful! We are chicken stew people, but this beef was awesome! The Hubby said it was a keeper! thanks so much for sharing such great recipes! Love your blog!!
Susan

Christy said...

I made this for my family two nights ago! It was a huge hit... I did add green beans and corn because my kiddos love it so much. I also forgot to add the corn starch :/ but it was still very tasty. I made corn bread muffins to go with it. YUM! Thanks for sharing all of your recipes. I have been coming here for new recipes for a year now. I don't think there is one I have made that we didn't love.

Rachael said...

Wow- just wow!! I have never tried a stew that I have liked- not even a little bit- until tonight! Thank you so much! Now I can join the rest of the stew lovin' people out there- except this one is REALLY a keeper! Thanks, Shay!

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