Thursday, December 9, 2010
Oh, okay. Fiiiine. I will write a real post.
I have heard from multiple people that after you've been cooking from your family, it isn't the cooking that wears you down, it's the meal planning. After thousands and thousands of meals, it can get exhausting having to decide what everyone has for dinner. The only solution I've heard of is having someone else make up the meal plan for the week for you so that you don't have to wrack your brain. Plus, as an added bonus at least one of your wards will be happy with dinner.
Over Thanksgiving John mentioned a couple of times how much he liked Irish Stew, and that got me in the mood. So the day we returned from Pennsylvania I scoured the web for Irish Stew recipes (there aren't many, honestly) and made us this warm treat.
This soup is the definition of hearty. And delicious. I strongly recommend serving it with crusty bread on a cold evening. This also happens to be one of those recipes that is even better the next day. Gotta love those. Now go out and make some Irish stew for your husband and pretend you did it to appease his wishes, when really you just had a craving.
Adapted from Simply Recipes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 1/4 pounds beef stew meat (not lean, or else it will be tough)
6 garlic cloves, minced
6 cups beef broth
1 cup Guinness
1 cup red wine
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
2 tablespoons butter
3 russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 large onion, chopped
2 cups peeled carrots cut into 1/2 inch pieces
Heat olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add beef pieces (lightly salted) that are cut into 1/2 inch pieces to the pan. Do not crowd so that the pieces can brown - work in batches if necessary. Brown the pieces on all sides, this takes about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook for another minute. Add in beef broth, Guinness, red wine, tomato paste, sugar, thyme, Worcestershire sauce, and bay leaves. Stir mixture and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer, covered, for an hour. Stir occasionally.
While the mixture simmers melt butter in a large pot. Add potatoes, onion, and carrots. Saute until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Turn off heat and wait until stew has simmered for an hour, then add vegetables to stew and simmer, uncovered, for 40 minutes, until everything is tender. Discard bay leaves. Skim fat off the top of the stew (tiling the pan helps) and discard. Add salt and pepper to taste (mine needed a bit of salt at this point).