Tuesday, September 30, 2008

My First Attempt at Beef Stew

Leftovers For Tomorrow's
Beef Stew

This beef stew was dinner on Sunday night with leftovers to share with friends yesterday and today. I was not even left with one bowl to freeze for later, so I'm thinkin' that it was pretty tasty. Served with popovers - I'll post that recipe the day I can get a popover to look ready for its close up!

I happily report that all of my test subjects enjoyed my concoction. In the interest of time, I did not use a crock pot for this stew, but I most likely will when next I stew... thanks for reading my recipe, please comment if you try it out, and keep in mind, I'm not a cook. I'm just experimenting with food...I also never measure anything, not really, so these are my best guesses at what I used…

Lots of potatoes cut into small cubes – boiled for 12 minutes (I used those little golden potatoes)

I added one cube of chicken bouillon cube dissolved in 1 cup hot water (didn't have beef bouillon - it did not taste at all like chicken, fear not)

Diced onions and green pepper & cut carrots

Red pepper chopped in my food processor to get really small pieces

2 - 3 cloves garlic, depending on size; I used 3 medium – in garlic press

I mixed the vegetables, potatoes, broth (from chicken bouillon) and started to simmer on low. I needed more liquid, so I added a second chicken bouillon cube dissolved in hot water.

One can cream of celery soup (I would have used celery, too, but all my veggies had already been cooking & I didn't want the celery to be undercooked if I ran out to get some.)

One packet dry onion soup (a friend recommended) & add boiling water until you get to consistency you want - it will thicken.

Main seasonings: Ground rosemary and ground thyme & also some regular rosemary.

Accent seasonings: paprika, dash ground cloves, 2 bay leaves, peppercorns from grinder, black pepper flavored with Worcestershire sauce, sea salt, bit of lemon juice, dash oregano, onion powder, garlic powder, dash of sage, and a pinch of crushed red pepper.

A bit of light cream, olive oil, & butter – 2 pats, maybe

One TBSP brown sugar

Around 1/2 - 1 cup flour or more (really not sure on this one, as far as how much I really used, add as needed to thicken)

Sirloin meat – cut into cube-like pieces. I cooked in a frying pan in olive oil, flour & added the McCormick's Broiled Steak seasoning I use when I broil meat. I had to cook the meat in 2 sections, as I had just over 2 lbs., so with the second batch, I also added brown sugar to the mix – then I dumped all my beef in with everything else, and finally my stew started to look the right color…

I added a bit of hot water when it seemed to get too thick & served with popovers. I cooked a little too high (burner on level 4) for the first 20 minutes, and a little started to stick to the bottom of the pot, but I caught it in time to adjust (down to level 2... eventually down to 1) .That was really the only thing that went wrong, but it was still delicious. Probably cooked almost two hours – had cooked veggies for 45 min before adding beef. The carrots were cooked perfectly. I was afraid I should have boiled them first, but there's no need. Inspired or what? Used leftovers & just had to pick up the cream of celery, the meat & dry onion soup mix.