Sunday, November 14, 2010

Beef Stew

 I have mentioned before that my mother wasn't much of a father, however, had a few dishes that he would create on the weekends to supplement. One of my favorites was beef stew. This dish has been a staple in my repertoire for years and I doubt I make it the same way twice. The basics are the same, but refrigerator contents play a large role, for instance, I don't usually use mushrooms, but I had some on hand, so I threw them in. I have used brussel sprouts in the past as well, so be creative! Here is what I did this time!


2 lbs chuck roast, prepackaged for stew or cut up
Flour, salt and pepper for dregging
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup chopped onions
3-4 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup dry red wine
1 can diced tomatoes
1 can beef broth
6 large mushrooms, quartered
carrots, 10-15 baby
potatoes, 4-6 quartered
rutabaga(turnips, parsnips work well too), one large, two small, cut into bite sized chunks

Dreg beef in seasoned flour and brown in skillet in butter. Transfer to crock pot. Sauté onions and carrots in same skillet, scraping beef bits from bottom of pan.  After about 5 minutes, add garlic and mushrooms and sauté another 1-2 minutes. Add wine, broth and tomatoes and bring to a boil. Pour sauce over meat in crock pot and cook on low 3-4 hours. Add the carrots and rutabaga or other root vegetables and continue cooking. After about an hour, add the potatoes and cook for 1-1 1/2 hours longer, until vegetables are tender.

I serve this with salad and homemade artisan bread...delicious! Two pounds of beef makes a full crockpot of stew, so this is another instance where I cook, serve, freeze and still have some leftovers for the next day. I paid about $8 for the meat and I would estimate that the rest of the ingredients totaled about $5, so for $13 I made at least 8 servings(probably more like 10) of stew...let's see, that's about $1.65 a serving...not bad and the crockpot did most of the work!

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