beef-mushroom stew


celebrating three years together with my partner means, for us, a simple dinner at home. when you don’t have the time to head out to a restaurant for a proper long dinner, you want something hearty and comforting.

I went onto The Pioneer Woman because I love Ree and her photography and recipes, and the fact that she has a manly cowboy as a husband and little boys to feed means she knows what men like to eat.

it was a weekday-night, and so I couldn’t really do anything too complicated, but this stew looked to be the thing! how can you go wrong with simmered mushrooms and beef in wine? when we had it for dinner that night, it was good, but it was much much better the next day as lunch.

I’m leaving my quantities and notes here because I did a half batch and made some substitutions, but head over to Ree’s for more step-by-step photos!

  1. dice 420g of british stew beef meat – usually this refers to some sort of marbled meat that becomes tender with long, slow cooking on low heat. heat 1 tablespoon of olive oil with 1 tablespoon of butter to high heat. sear the meat until it is mainly brown on the outside – but don’t cook it through! transfer to a plate while you get on with the rest.
  2. dice 1 shallot and 2 cloves of garlic and heat up the pan (that you used to sear the beef in – don’t clean it!) and saute the garlic and shallots for two minutes on medium heat. add 120g of brown cremini mushrooms, and cook for 2 more minutes.
  3. pour in about 1/4 cup of red wine – I bought a tiny bottle of jacob’s creek as I don’t drink regularly – as well as 1.5 cups of water and 1/3 of a beef stock jelly. give it a stir, add ground black pepper liberally. add the browned meat back in, as well as 2 sprigs of fresh thyme.
  4. cover and simmer for 40 minutes, and after that make a flour slurry with cold water and pour it into the stew to thicken up the liquid for another 10 minutes on medium heat.
  5. serve over pasta or egg noodles!

this stew tastes very continental – in that I don’t recognize it as british or european, and initially I thought the stew liquid tasted very much like mushroom soup – but in a good way. this is good for the man in your life who likes meat (and which man doesn’t?)

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