Talk of joy: there may be things better than beef stew and baked potatoes and home-made bread – there may be. Ray Stannard Baker (BrainyQuote)
I was checking my Facebook posts this morning and was reminded by Frank at Everybody Loves Italian how wonderful it is to have Sunday’s dinner cooking all day and the delicious aromas wafting through the house. I just had to cook something for tonight’s dinner that would create a comfort food and mouth-watering fragrance. Hearty beef stew it is!
This recipe has a few added ingredients that are optional. I made a note of them on the recipe card. I had just made vegetable bouillon and was dying to try it out, so added it to the beef stew. It seemed to marry just fine with the other ingredients – I think next time I’ll add a little more. However, if you don’t have vegetable bouillon (homemade or store bought) don’t worry. I’ve made this recipe many times without it in the past.
A hunk of homemade bread added to the meal. Oh so good!
- • 1 lb stew beef cut into small cubes
- • 2 tablespoons flour or cornstarch
- • 1 small to medium onion chopped
- • 2 carrots cut into bite-sized pieces
- • 1 celery stalk sliced
- • 2 cloves of garlic diced
- • 2 potatoes cut into chunks (I used red potatoes but any potato would be good)
- • 1 cup tomatoes chunked (optional)
- • 1 small delicata squash chunked (optional)
- • 3-4 cups beef broth
- • ½ cup red wine (optional)
- • ½ teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
- • ½ teaspoon sugar
- • ¼ teaspoon paprika
- • 1 bay leaf
- • 2 sprigs fresh thyme (or 1 tsp dried thyme)
- • 1 teaspoon vegetable bouillon (optional)
- • Salt and pepper
- • Olive oil for sautéing meat and vegetables
- Heat a large skillet with olive oil for about a minute.
- In a ziplock bag combine flour, salt and pepper. Put pieces of stew beef into the bag to cover with flour mixture.
- Drop stew meat into the skillet and sear until brown - a few minutes.
- Remove meat and add to slow cooker.
- Add onions to the skillet and sauté until softened.
- Then add carrots, celery, garlic and sauté all vegetables little longer.
- Add beef broth to the skillet to deglaze the pan. Bring broth to a bubble and then simmer a few minutes.
- Transfer everything to the slow cooker, scraping the skillet bottom to pick up all the brown bits.
- Add remaining ingredients to the slow cooker and enough beef broth to cover.
- Stir to combine everything, cover and cook on low for 8 hours or on high for 4 hours.
- Stir occasionally until beef is tender.
- Remove bay leaves and thyme sprigs before serving.
- When I make beef stew the ingredients vary each time. I use whatever I have in my kitchen or from the garden. Today's version has added garden tomatoes and delicata squash. I also used a teaspoon of vegetable bouillon that I just made a few days ago to add some extra flavor.