I'm a kinda fly-by-the-seat of my pants kind of cook. Sometimes that works out well...sometimes it really doesn't.
My attempt at a beef stew last weekend worked out amazingly well. It was one of those cooking experiments that just works...and I want to share it with you :).
(Okay, I also want to keep the recipe somewhere so I can try it again :).
For this recipe I used grass-fed/finished stewing beef from Ogopogo Meats (my fave budget-friendly place for ethically raised meat :). If you don't have access to grass-fed/finished, look for organic (it'll be really close in taste). And, this recipe is more veggie than beef, so it (hopefully won't) break the bank (depending on your budget and your access to reasonably priced organic beef).
Totally Delish Beef Stew (slow cooker friendly)
(for those who enjoy some animal protein from time to time)
- 3/4 lbs of stewing beef (organic or grass-fed/finished if possible)
- 1 medium onion, diced
- 3 cloves of garlic, crushed or chopped finely
- 1.5 inches ginger, grated (finely)
- 3 small sweet potatoes, diced
- 3 small potatoes, diced
- 1 28oz can of diced tomatoes (I used one that was fire-roasted...I highly recommend that :)
- 1 or 2 cups of mushroom stock (that's what I had, beef stock would also work)
- a handful of shiitake mushrooms, chopped
- a splash of red wine (red wine vinegar would also work)
- 2+ tbsp of olive oil
- 1 tsp turmeric
- 1 tsp oregano (dried)
- 1 tsp basil (dried)
- 2 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp cumin
- salt and pepper to taste (I used about 1.5 tsp of himalayan salt)
Saute the onion with 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the garlic and ginger once the onions start to soften. Add to crock pot (or large stock pot) when they're cooked.
Add stewing beef and 1 tbsp of olive oil to the same pan. Brown sides and add to pot.
Deglaze the pan with the splash of red wine (or red wine vinegar). Be sure to get all of the nice bits off the bottom. Add that to pot.
Add the rest of the ingredients to the crock or stock pot. Almost cover with mushroom (or beef) stock (the ingredients shouldn't swim, just almost covered).
Crock pot - turn on low for 8 hours, or high for 4 (it's better on low...it tenderizes the beef really nicely)
Stock pot - bring to a boil and simmer on low for 1 or 2 hours (not sure of the exact time as I used a crock pot). Stir regularly. It's done when the potatoes and sweet potatoes are soft, the beef is cooked, and it tastes and smells amazing.