In a cooking rut, I asked my aunt what I should make to blog about. Her response? “Well, I’ve noticed you make a lot more desserts than you do main dishes!” Ha. You weren’t supposed to notice! So I blubbered up some excuse about enjoying experimenting with desserts and then just making the same old main dishes over and over again. It’s mostly true, but I do have a sweet tooth.
Her final suggestion was that I make an oven beef stew. It sounded delicious! I have lots of beef in the freezer so I got out a roast, chopped it up, and set to making some stew.
And am I ever glad I did! Tender, juicy bits of meat floating amidst some chunky veggies, all flavored of hearty beef. Thanks, aunty, for the wonderful suggestion!
(And just so you know, not every recipe I make turns out great…I made bread to go with this stew and completely underbaked it. I should have taken a picture. I also made baked stuffed apples, for dessert, which tasted horrible. Probably because the apples have been in my fridge since Thanksgiving. Now that is pathetic.)
Adapted from here
1 1/2 pounds beef cubes
2 t salt
2 t pepper
2 T oil
6 T brown rice flour*
1 medium onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 – 4 cups beef stock
1 pint canned tomatoes
1/2 t Italian seasoning
3 large potatoes, chopped (I don’t peel mine)
4 large carrots, chopped (I do peel mine)
1 cup chopped Swiss chard
1 cup frozen peas
Heat the oil in a dutch oven. Season the beef with the salt and pepper. Brown the beef in the hot oil (do this in several batches if necessary). When nicely browned, add the onion and garlic. Saute a few minutes before stirring in the rice flour. Stir for a minute or so and then begin slowly adding the stock, stirring all the while. Then add the tomatoes and Italian seasoning. Cover the pot, transfer it to the oven and bake at 350 for 75 minutes. Add the potatoes, carrots, and chard to the beef and place the lid back on. Bake another hour or until the veggies are soft. Stir in the peas just before serving.
*All-purpose flour would work, too, but I just recently found a little jar of home-ground brown rice flour in my fridge, left over from when I made Tage rice cereal 6 months ago. I decided to try using it instead of all-purpose flour when thickening roux and I love it! It doesn’t have the large flakes of bran/germ that wheat flour does and makes a nice, smooth sauce. I think I’m hooked. I do believe I’ll keep a jar of the stuff in the fridge at all times.
Serves: 5 or 6