I have made a few different beef stew recipes over the years, a beef and Guinness stew made in a slow cooker, Julia Child's beef bourguignon, but this is the one that I always come back to. It's the one that makes my mouth water every time I think of it. I love the acidity of the wine and the tomatoes and the richness of the broth and I love how the beef just falls apart. I especially love how easy it is, the main ingredient being patience. It's a great recipe for a cloudy Sunday afternoon. Recipe adapted from here.
Serves 4 | Prep time 30 minutes | Cook time 3.5 hours
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 red onion, cut into medium dice
5 stalks celery, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
3 carrots, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 pound stew beef
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 1/2 cups dry red wine (I used an $8 Zinfandel)
4 sprigs fresh rosemary
8 sprigs fresh thyme (or 1 teaspoon dried)
5 cloves garlic, minced
1 28 oz. can diced tomatoes
2 cups boiling water or beef stock
a dozen or so small potatoes, quartered
Preheat oven to 300°.
In a Dutch oven over moderately high heat, heat oil until hot but not smoking. Add onion, carrot, and celery and sauté, stirring occasionally, until light golden brown, about 10 minutes.
Add beef, generously season with salt and pepper, and sauté, stirring occasionally, until brown, about 5 minutes.
Add wine, rosemary, thyme, and garlic, stir well, and bring to boil.
Add tomatoes, and bring to a boil. Cover and transfer to oven or slow cooker.
Stir every 30 minutes or so, until beef is tender, about 2 hours.
Once beef is tender add stock and potatoes and return to oven until potatoes are done, about 25 minutes. Serve with cornbread. I like Trader Joe's boxed cornbread mix. (Egg noodles would be good too!)