I don’t know about you, but there are very few dinners as delicious as beef stew on a cold Wintery day. This recipe is one that I use consistently throughout the Winter months, it can be prepped in a heavy bottom pot and then transferred to a slow cooker if you want to do the slow cooking while you’re at work or it can be finished in the oven for several hours low and slow and your whole house will small amazing!
1/4 cup Oil
2 Medium onions, large dice
1 Tsp. Kosher Salt
965g Beef, tough cut like chuck or blade roast
1/2 cup All purpose flour
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Tbsp. Paprika
1/2 Tbsp. Kosher Salt
1/2 Cup Red Wine
1400ml (2 boxes) Beef Stock
1 Tbsp Better than Bouillon Beef
1/2 Tbsp Thyme, dried
2 Tsp. Ground black pepper, fresh
3 Tbsp. Cornstarch
1/4 Cup Cold Water
5 Carrots, peeled and cut into large pieces
2 Tbsp Italian parsley, fresh and chopped
In a heavy bottom pan over medium/low heat, add diced onions and 1 tsp. salt allow to cook low and slow for 25 to 35 minutes until they are caramelized. In the meantime, cut the beef into 1 inch cubes and drain on a paper towel to absorb extra blood; you want the meat to be nice an dry so it will brown. Toss the meat with the flour to coat, this will help create a fond in the pan (the little brown bits on the bottom) and it will aid in thickening the final gravy.
Turn the heat to high and add the beef and remaining salt to the pot, allow to cook on high until it begins to form a crust on the bottom of the pan (fond) and the meat gets some color. You can do this in small batches as Julia Child would suggest but I’ve always found that to be a pain in the butt and so I just go for it.
Brown the meat and add the paprika, bouillon, thyme and pepper. Deglaze with red wine and 1 cup of stock, this means add the liquid while scraping the bits off the bottom of the pan. The following picture shows a well deglazed pan.
Add the remaining stock and transfer to a slow cooker. This step can be done the evening before and then just place the slow cooker insert into the fridge until the next morning when you want to start the cooking. Cook it over a six to eight hour period. Transfer the whole thing once more to the pot and place it over medium high heat, add the carrots and simmer until they are tender. Mix the cornstarch with the cold water removing all lumps, stir the mixture into the stew while stirring and bring to a bubble, add parsley to finish. Serve with mashed potatoes, gnocchi, pasta, roasted potatoes etc… Enjoy!