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Classic Beef Stew!
A classic old-fashioned beef stew is an easy and inexpensive way to get a simple comforting Sunday meal. You can vary this beef stew to what you have on hand: I’ve used beef chuck (grytbitar), potatoes, carrots, green beans, and leek. I also share a few tips on making a flavor base for cooking.
- Beef (Grytbitar)
- Tomato paste
- Canned tomatoes
- Organic beef bullion
- Flavor base veggies (I used onions, celery, and garlic)
- Green beans
- Seasoning (I used bay leaves (lagerblad), Thyme, and salt)
What’s a flavor base?
These are the ingredients you start your dish with to get deeper more complex flavor, and when you are talking about comfort food this is mandatory! In many cuisines, starting off with garlic and onion is very common, however there are trends according to where in the world (or even your country) you learn to cook. For example, I have memories of my mother and grandmother starting with onions, bell peppers, and celery. If you’d like to learn more about classic flavor bases, I recommend looking up Soffritto, Mirepiox, and Cajun Holy Trinity… it’s really interesting!
First are going to go ahead and brown the beef in a little olive oil… your not cooking them through just browning the outside… then set aside. Add a splash of vinegar (I prefer red wine) to deglaze the pot and free up all those flavor bits stuck to the bottom..
We are going to start our beef stew with a classic flavor base: onion, garlic, and celery. Also, some tomato paste and a can of tomatoes (crushed or whole).
Return the beef to the pot and add enough water to cover.
Add in seasoning, I used simple bay leaves, thyme, and salt.
Finally, let that heat up to a nice simmer, then turn the heat down to low and cook until the meat starts to get tender (about an hour). Do not let it BOIL! The meat will end up tough and chewy.
While the beef is cooking, chop up your veggies: potatoes (just a little more than the amount of meat you used), carrots (half the amount of potatoes), and your green beans.
Let that the beef stew cook until everything is tender. If you want a thicker stew, let it simmer with the lid off.
Tip: A little cheat to get a thick stew is to add a bit of cornstarch mixed with water as it simmers.
Leftovers: You can keep your beef stew in the fridge for a week at least. Reheat to high temperature. Beef stew also freezes really well!
Don’t forget the cornbread! You can find my special recipe and video here: Cornbread: Southern Skillet Recipe