Thursday, December 17, 2015

Beef Stew

Many Christmas traditions revolve around food and in our house, there's no exception. We started a tradition when we lived in Cortina of eating beef stew on Christmas night for dinner. I'm not quite sure how it came about - Ryan always had practice on Christmas evening because he always had a game the day after Christmas - and after our big Christmas Eve party, I guess I didn't want to cook another elaborate meal, so we settled on beef stew which is hearty, delicious and super easy to make.

{Image via}

1/4 cup olive oil
1 pound of stew meat (check weight)
1 large onion, diced
1/4 cup flour
2 cloves minced garlic
1 cup red wine
1 tbsp dried thyme
2 bay leaves
4 cups beef broth
4 stalks of celery, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
3 potatoes, chopped

Heat the olive oil on medium high heat and add the stew meat. Sear until the outside is no longer pink, then remove with a slotted spoon and set aside on a paper towel-lined plate. Turn the heat down to medium and add the onion to the pot; cook until softened. Add the flour and stir to combine and cook for another minute. Add the garlic and cook for one more minute, being careful that you aren't burning anything. Add the red wine and stir to combine, scraping the bits from the bottom of the pot as well. Simmer the wine for two minutes, then add the thyme, bay leaves and beef broth, as well as a bit of salt and pepper. Also add the beef back in. Turn the heat down to low, cover and simmer for one hour.

In the meantime, you can chop up your vegetables. After an hour, add the carrots, celery and potatoes to the stew, cover again, and simmer for another hour and a half.

Serve hot with chopped parsley on top and crusty bread on the side.