Braised Beef and Mushroom Stew
My mother used to prepare beef stew for us as children during the chilly winter months. I spotted some amazingly marbled chuck flats at the grocery store and couldn't resist recreating this comforting dish for dinner.
Slowly cooked in red wine and a delicious mushroom stock with potatoes, carrots, fresh thyme, and rosemary. I happened to have some mushroom stock on hand, but you could use high-quality beef or chicken stock. Happy cooking.
You might not require the cornstarch slurry if you use beef or chicken stock. The mushroom broth does not contain the gelatin present in chicken or beef, which would help the stew thicken as it cooks.
Yield: serves 4
Preparation time: 45 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours
2 tbsp bacon fat
1 lb beef chuck flat, diced
Fresh cracked black pepper
1½ cups yellow onion, diced
6 crimini mushrooms, quartered
3 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 cup red wine
4 cups mushroom stock
1 Roma tomato, chopped
1 tsp fresh thyme leaves
1 sprig of rosemary
3 red potatoes, chopped
1 cup carrots, chopped
1 tbsp cornstarch + 1 tbsp water
Add the bacon fat to a dutch oven or large saucepot and heat on high.
Season the beef, add about half of the pieces to the pot, and brown on all sides.
Remove the beef from the pan onto a tray and finish browning. Turn the heat down slightly if needed to prevent the pot from burning.
Once all the meat is browned and on a tray, add the onions and mushrooms to the pot and saute, stirring occasionally until golden brown.
Add the garlic and saute, stirring until the garlic is cooked about 2 minutes. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper.
Now, deglaze the pot with the red wine. Cook until the wine has almost completely evaporated.
Add the mushroom stock, tomato, thyme, and rosemary cover, and turn the heat down to a simmer.
Cook for 1 hour, then add the potatoes and carrots cover and finish cooking, about 1½ hours. Until the meat and vegetables are tender.
Mix the cornstarch and water and slowly whisk it into the stew to thicken it.
Turn the heat off and serve.