Sunday, February 7, 2016

Best Beef Stew Ever

Best Beef Stew Ever
 "Best Beef Stew Ever."
That is a direct quote from Chris. The recipe was in the little booklet that came with the Crock Pot. A simple recipe that resulted in the "Best Beef Stew Ever."

Tonight was the Super Bowl. Neither of our teams was in it this year but we still watched. Well, I watched until Downton Abbey came on. To start off, or pre-game, I made a hummus from Cannellini Beans, Kalamata Olives, and Capers. Winner! The recipe comes from Jeanette's Healthy Living site.

1 1/2 cups cooked Cannellini Beans, or 1 can Cannellini Beans, rinsed and drained well
1/4 cup Kalamata Olives, pitted
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and drained
1 clove garlic, minced
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon, juiced
salt and pepper, to taste

Place beans, olives, capers, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor. Process until almost smooth.
Gradually pour olive oil through the feed tube.
Add lemon juice.
Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Now about that stew. So easy!

2-4 pounds beef chuck stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
1/2 cup four
Kosher salt and pepper
3 cups beef broth
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
6 small potatoes, quartered
2-3 onions, chopped
3 celery stalks, sliced

Sprinkle flour, salt, and pepper over meat. Place meat in Crock-Pot slow cooker.
Add remaining ingredients and stir well.
Cover and cook on Low for 8-10 hours or on High for 5-6 hours, or until the meat is tender. Stir thoroughly before serving. 

The only thing I would change about the recipe is to add carrots. It could have used a little color. 

And I had to make something to go with the stew. I was at the grocery store waiting in the Deli line, one of the circles of hell and was reading an email from Food52. It was a recipe for Slap Grilled Cheese. A focaccia bread sliced in half and filled with cheese and then reheated to melt the cheese. That's what I went with. I made the Jim Lahey Focaccia recipe, starting it last night. Nice. The bread was, of course, delicious and the for the cheese inside I used Sharp Cheddar and Gouda. Yeah, this recipe is a keeper.

Cheddar or comparable cheese grated

Preheat your oven to 375°F. Slice the focaccia so that you have two equal slabs.
Sprinkle your preferred grated cheese for as little or as much coverage as you'd like between the slices of focaccia.
Weigh the whole thing down with a heavy-bottomed pan—that's right, put a pan right on top of the focaccia—and bake at 375°F for about 8 minutes.
Slice as small as you'd like to serve. 

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