Today, like almost everyday, was rainy and blustery. I love meaty stews on cold winter days. I want to make the sort of gooey, aromatic beef stew they'd serve in Winterfell.
Although, I don't think I loved this stew. It was more high maintenance than expected. Without a stir every 10-15 minutes, a gross, thick skin formed and the soup formed a crusty burnt bottom. And after 2.5 hours of simmering the meat was still not as tender and flaky as I wanted. What a bummer. I'd experiment with beef stew more, but it takes a lot of time and money. The butcher meat was the same price as Tesco's - £7. For that price and 3 hours of work, I'm probably better off cooking something else.
Recipe: Beef Stew
Adapted from The Kitchn
Serving size: 2-3 people
- 700g stewing beef
- 1-2 tbs vegetable oil
- 1 onion, diced
- 2 stalks celery, diced
- 3 cloves garlic
- 1 tbs tomato paste
- 1 tbs Worcester sauce
- 1/2 tps salt
- 110 g (1/2 cup) red wine
- 3 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 675 - 900g (3-4 cups) chicken stock
- 2 carrots, diced
- 300g potatoes (any floury variety)
- Cube the beef. Try to make them approximately the same size so they cook evenly.
- Bring a large pot to medium high heat. Pour 1-2 tbs vegetable oil - make sure it's hot before you put in the beef. Work in multiple batches if necessary, so you don't crowed the pot. The meat should make a satisfying sizzle when it hits the oil. Be patient. Let the meat get nice and seared.
Note: if the crust at the bottom of the pan starts smoking, add a few tbs water! Don't let your pesky fire alarm go off.
- Transfer the seared meat to a separate plate. Reduce the heat to medium. Add another tbs oil. Cook the onions until translucent, about 8-10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds - be careful of burning it!
- Add tomato paste, Worcester sauce; stir. Add flour.
- Deglaze with red wine. Scrape bottom of pot.
- Bring heat to low. Simmer for 1.5 hours. Add potatoes and celery. Simmer for another 30-45 minutes, until potatoes and meat are very tender.
- Note: Stir OFTEN. I neglected the pot so the bottom burnt and a thick skin formed. I learned to stir it at least every 15 minutes, if not more. This was annoying.
- Serve with beer and fresh parsley.