Hearty and Healthy Beef Stew

Cold Weather Comfort Food

I’ve made Beef Stew before, but wanted to change it up. Researching other recipes, I found some that simmered in a crockpot and some that baked in an oven. (Yes, you read right. Who knew?). I decided to use a crockpot, combining recipes for Ina Garten’s “Ultimate Beef Stew” (Food Network) and Chungah’s “Slow Cooker Beef Stew” (Damn Delicious). The only addition needed? A loaf of bread. This combination requires a bit of prep time, but it’s now my go-to Beef Stew recipe because it was hearty, healthy, savory, and delicious! Plus, there was enough leftover for future meals. Yay!

Hon, hope you find your own comfort during this strangest of holiday seasons.

Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 3 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 2 cups chopped fennel*, trimmed and cored (1 large bulb)
  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic (6 cloves)
  • 4 Tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 (14.5-ounce) can diced tomatoes, including the juices
  • 1/3 cup red wine
  • 1 pound carrots (4-5 carrots), scrubbed and cut 1/2 inch thick diagonally
  • 1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes (2 large potatoes), scrubbed, 1-inch diced
  • 2 celery stalks, cut diagonally into slices
  • 1 parsnip, peeled and sliced lengthwise
  • 10 ounces frozen peas
  • 3 cups beef broth
  • 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 2 bay leaves

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  2. Season beef with salt and pepper, to taste. Add beef to the skillet and cook until evenly browned, about 2-3 minutes. (Tip: Drain cooked beef on paper towels before adding to crockpot. If there’s a lot of oil left in skillet, once it cools, wipe it down before heating up wine.)
  3. Place beef, potatoes, carrots, parsnips, and peas into a 6-qt slow cooker. Stir in beef broth, Worcestershire, thyme, paprika, turmeric, and bay leaves.
  4. Heat 1/3 cup of the wine in skillet over medium heat. Add onions, fennel, garlic and sauté, stirring occasionally, for 7 to 8 minutes, until the vegetables are tender.
  5. Stir tomato paste and diced tomatoes into the vegetables. Bring to a simmer for a few minutes. Add to crockpot. Stir ingredients until well combined; season with salt and pepper, to taste.
  6. Cover and cook on low heat for 7-8 hours or high heat for 3-4 hours.

Notes:

–The original recipes call for less meat, but I used 3 pounds so that there’d be enough for now and later.

–If, like me, you’ve never cut fennel before, click here to watch Melissa Clark’s video. Now I know!

Yield: Approximately 8-10 servings.

Slow Cooker Beef Stew

“Mom, you never make beef stew!” my son said excitedly.

“Not true,” I replied. “I just haven’t found a recipe I like.”

Now I have! Surprisingly, this version from allrecipes.com, doesn’t call for red wine, but Hubby and kids liked it so much they helped themselves to seconds and thirds. It was delicious as leftovers, too.

Happy cooking, hon!

Ingredients:
  • 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 1/2 cups beef broth
  • 3 potatoes, diced
  • 4 carrots, sliced
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
Directions:
  1. Place meat in slow cooker. In a small bowl mix together the flour, salt, and pepper; pour over meat, and stir to coat meat with flour mixture. Stir in the garlic, bay leaf, paprika, Worcestershire sauce, onion, beef broth, potatoes, carrots, and celery.
  2. Cover, and cook on Low setting for 10 to 12 hours, or on High setting for 4 to 6 hours.

Crockpot Chicken and Wild Rice

Crockpot Chicken and Wild Rice

Cure for the Cold Weather

If you like chicken pot pie or risotto, then this easy chicken dish is for you. I was looking for a new crock pot recipe and found this “creamy stew” by Eileen Goltz . Her recipe calls for kosher breakfast beef but, since I have no idea what that is, I took it out! (Maybe it’s fake bacon or “F-acon?” Lol!) This yummy recipe not only made the house smell great, it warmed us up on another night in the “Arctic Zone” aka New Jersey!

Happy cooking, hon!

Gather ingredients.

Cook chicken for a few minutes, and then add onion and carrots to the skillet.

Cook chicken, onion, carrots and broth in crockpot.

Crockpot Chicken and Wild Rice

Ingredients:

1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast cut into 1-inch pieces (used 6 chicken breasts)

1 chopped onion

2 chopped carrots

4 1/2 cups chicken broth

1/4 teaspoon dried marjoram leaves

1 1/2 cups wild rice

1/2 cup parve sour cream (I used Tofutti sour cream. I assume you can use regular sour cream if you want.)

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet, cook chicken for 3-4 minutes. Stir in onion and carrots for just a minute and then place mixture in the crockpot.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the broth and parve sour cream and mix until smooth. Add marjoram to broth.
  3. Pour the broth over the chicken in the crockpot. Add the wild rice. Cover crockpot and cook on HIGH for 30 minutes. Reduce crockpot setting to LOW and cook for 6 hours until chicken is thoroughly cooked and rice is tender.

Yield: 6 servings.

Related Posts:

Crockpot Pepper Steak

Still Chilly Chili

Warm From the Inside Bean and Vegetable Soup