Hearty Beef Stew

I think this could be considered the perfect Sunday night meal during the winter months.  It takes a few hours to cook, so you’ll want to plan ahead, but it is not difficult at all.  A little hands on time is all it takes, and then the oven does the rest of the work.

I served the stew with Red Lobster biscuits.

Hearty Beef Stew
{source:  adapted from America’s Test Kitchen seen at Good Things Catered}

Ingredients:

3 lbs. beef chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1 1/2 in. cubes {I used approx. 1.5 pounds of beef stew meat}

salt and ground pepper

3 Tbsp vegetable oil

1 medium onion, chopped coarse

2 celery stalks, sliced 1/4 inch thick

3 medium garlic cloves, minced

3 Tbsp unbleached all-purpose flour

3/4 c. dry red wine

1.5 c. low-sodium chicken broth

2 bay leaves

1 tsp ground dried thyme

4 medium red potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-in. cubes

3 or 4 large carrots , peeled and sliced 1/4 in. thick

1 c. frozen peas  {I omitted}

1/4 c. minced parsley {I omitted}

Directions:
-Preheat the oven to 300 degrees.
-Dry beef thoroughly and season generously with salt and pepper.
-Heat 1 Tbsp oil in Dutch oven over medium high heat.
-Add half the meat so that pieces are not touching and cook not moving until brown (about 2-3 min)
-Use tongs and rotate pieces until all sides are browned (about 5 additional min.)
-Transfer beef to medium bowl and add another 1 Tbsp oil to pan if needed, repeating previous steps with other half of beef.
-Reduce heat to medium and add additional 1 Tbsp oil to now empty pan and swirl to coat bottom.
-Add onions, celery, and 1/4 tsp salt and cook, scraping bottom of pan for brown bits until softened (about 5 mins).
-Add garlic and continue to cook for 30 sec.
-stir in the flour and cook until lightly colored (1-2 min.)
-Add wine, scraping the bottom and stiring until thick and flour is dissolved.
-Gradually add the chicken stock, stirring constantly scraping up the remaining browned bits on bottom of pan.
-Add bay leaves and thyme and return to simmer.
-Add beef, return to simmer, and place the pot in the oven.
-Cook for 1 hour.
-Add potatoes and carrots cover and return to the oven to cook for additional hour.
-Remove the pot from oven (here you can cover and refrigerate for up to 3 days.)
-Add the peas, cover and allow to stand for 5 min.
-Stir in the parsley, discard bay leaves, adjust seasoning and serve immediately.

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