Next Irish recipe up is stew!
This recipe is not a traditional Irish stew, but I promise it is just as tasty (if not more delicious!). It is kind of a mix of traditional stew and a beef bourguignon! I use beef instead of lamb, and I prefer to serve mine with mashed potato, rather than putting potatoes into the stew (because mash soaks up the lovely gravy).
I tend to make a big pot of stew on a Sunday afternoon. Once it is in the pot, it involves minimal effort so will happily sit on the stove for a few hours while you get on with your day. Come back to it and dinner is ready or prepped for an easy meal on Monday or Tuesday.
500g Stewing beef, diced (*see below)
Approx. 5 tbsp. plain flour, seasoned with salt and pepper
1 onion, diced
2-3 cloves garlic, crushed
3-4 carrots, sliced
1 punnet mushrooms, quartered
Approx. 200ml red wine (1 large glass)**
300-400ml beef stock
2 tbsp tomato puree
2 bay leaves
1 tsp dried rosemary or 1 sprig of fresh rosemary
Oil, for frying (I used rapeseed oil)
Fry the onion in a pan with a little oil until softened and turning translucent.
Transfer to a large pot with the garlic, carrots and herbs.
Coat the beef pieces with the seasoned flour and fry (same pan as onions, don't wash in between!) in oil until browned on all sides, but not cooked through.
You will need to cook the beef in batches of 5-7 pieces at a time. Do not over-crowd the pan with meat. Add the browned meat to the saucepan with the veggies.
When all the meat has been browned and moved to the saucepan, keep the pan on the heat.
Pour in the red wine (or stock if not using). The wine should immediately bubble and start to reduce. As it does, scrape the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon to remove any bits of flour and meat stuck to the pan. This is deglazing the pan!
Once the wine has reduced by about half, stir in the stock and tomato puree until well combined.
Add the sauce to the saucepan with the other ingredients and mix through.
Put the pot on a medium heat and reduce to a simmer once it comes to the boil.
Make sure it doesn't boil vigorously at any point and stir regularly to make sure nothing catches on the bottom of the pan.
Add the mushrooms around half way through cooking time.
Simmer for 1 and a half to 2 and a half hours, or until the meat is tender.
*The only beef I could find in the supermarket was lean diced beef. If you can, choose meat with more fat as it cooks much better in a stew and adds more flavour to the sauce. If you can only get lean meat like me, keep an eye on the beef- if overcooks much quicker!
**If you don't wish to use red wine, just use the stock to deglaze the pan and don't let it reduce as much.
Coating the meat in flour and browning may seem like a lot of effort, but I promise it is worth it. The flour will thicken the sauce and browning the meat makes the sauce that lovely dark colour!
Add any veg you want- carrots and mushrooms are my favourites, but celery, parsnip, potatoes and lots more can also work.
Mmmmm....I'm hungry just writing about this stew!
It is perfect for the cold weekend we're expecting, so get the ingredients in and give it a go :)
Lots of love,
Little O x