Saturday, February 13, 2010

Will They Eat This? Vol. 4

This week's recipe was inspired by the weather. There was more snow on the ground than we had seen in ages, and cold, snowy weather just screams for stew -- and, stew I made. It was a tap room twist on your typical stew recipe -- made with beer.

The challenge was using what I had handy to create this dish -- 32" of snow made it impossible to venture to the store. I improvised a couple of the ingredients and an amazing flavor emerged!

Kathy's Beer Beef Stew

2 lbs of stew beef cut into 1 inch cubes
2 tbs corn starch
1 tbs olive oil
1 tsp Kosher salt
pepper to taste
1 clove of garlic, crushed
1 large sweet onion, sliced thinly
1 tbs worchestershire sauce
1 bag of Simply Potatoes -- diced potato and onion mix
1 1/2 cups of baby carrots coarsely chopped
1 1/2 cups of celery coarsely chopped
1 bottle of beer -- you would drink -- I used a German Lager
1 tbs of McCormick beef base (can sub 1 beef boullion cubes -- but reduce the salt)
1 bay leaf

In a large skillet heat oil over medium heat; in a large bowl, mix stew meat and corn starch; add meat to pan and brown for about 10 min., turning meat half way through; add salt, pepper and garlic, stir for 1 min.; Remove meat from pan and set aside in a large bowl; add onions, carrots and celery to the empty pan, cook for about 3-4 min. -- add a little oil if necessary; add potato mix, cook another 3-4 min.; return meat to pan and add worchestershire sauce, allow to cook for another 5 min.; add beer, McCormick beef base, bay leaf; allow to simmer over low heat stirring occasionally for about 1 1/2 - 2 hrs., meat should be fork tender. (remember to remove the bay leaf before serving)

I served Farfalle (bow tie) noodles with this meal, but no accompaniment is really necessary. A satisfying bowl of this scrumptious stew is enough on its own.

One other recipe note: McCormick beef base has become my best friend in the kitchen. It has less sodium than boullion cubes and gives a deep, rich flavor to your food without MSG. I'm allergic to MSG that is added to food -- this has residual naturally occurring MSG as a byproduct. It doesn't bother me at all, so this is a real boon for me in the kitchen.

The Stats

6 out of 6 were present

4 out of 6 ate the stew

5 out of 6 ate noodles (2 of which had only noodles -- and an applesauce)

The Verdict

This was one of the most delicious stews I have ever made. I will most certainly make this again. The two hold outs will learn to love this meal -- I don't think you can resist the flavor sensations of this bold, hearty stew.

Let me know what your family thinks of this recipe! Leave a comment.

Remember: Blessed are you who are now hungry, for you will be satisfied. (Lk 6:21)

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