Monday, January 11, 2010

Go-to Beef Stew

With wind chills in the negative this past week, it was a great opportunity to stay inside and eat big bowls of delicious soups and stews. This has been my go-to stew for a few years now, and it was eaten with gusto by myself and my hungry boys.

I love the simplicity of this stew and the tremendous flavor you get from so few ingredients. I pretty much always have everything on hand, so it's easy to whip up (though it does take about 2 hours total to cook). Perfect for a bitterly cold winter's day.
Go-to Beef Stew
Adapted from Dave Lieberman

2 pounds beef chuck for stew, cut into 1-inch cubes
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons butter
4 medium carrots, peeled, halved and cut into 1-inch chunks
3 small onions, diced
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans reduced-sodium beef or chicken broth (I always use both)
1 28oz can crushed tomatoes
1/2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed between fingers
1 medium russet or Yukon gold potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 cup frozen green beans (no need to thaw)

Season the beef cubes lightly with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter in a heavy 6-quart pot over medium heat. As soon as the butter starts to turn brown, add half the beef and raise the heat to high. At first, the beef will give off some liquid, but once that evaporates, the beef will start to brown. Cook, turning the beef cubes on all sides until the pieces are as evenly browned as possible, about 5 or 6 minutes after the water has boiled off. If the pan starts to get too brown at any point, just turn down the heat a little. Scoop the beef into a bowl and brown the rest of the beef the same way using the remaining butter.
Scoop out the second batch of beef, then add the carrots and onions and raise the heat to medium-high. Cook until the onion starts to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the flour until it has been worked into the veggies and you can’t see it any more. Pour in the broth and crushed tomatoes, and toss in the rosemary. Slide the beef back into the pot and bring the liquid to a boil.
Turn down the heat so the liquid is just breaking a gentle simmer. Partially cover the pot and cook 50 minutes. Stir the stew several times while simmering so it cooks evenly and nothing sticks to the bottom.
Stir the potatoes into the stew, cover the pot completely, and cook until the potatoes and beef are tender, stirring occasionally, about another 30-40 minutes. Add the beans and cook for the last 10-15 minutes.


  1. your blog is making me very hungry and it's only 9 am! i want some beef stew!!! thanks for your sweet comment. your blog is scrumptious! i always love finding great recipes - thanks.