Monday, December 5, 2011

Hearty,wholesomeness for a cold day...or any day.

I don't know if I've mentioned this before but I recently purchased a slow cooker that I have been so in love with.I call it the gift to home cooks from the culinary gods.It truly is because what more can you ask than to just pour in your ingredients into a crock pot and at the end of the day have a wholesome home cooked meal ready to be served without the hassle of slaving over the stove for hours.Don't get me wrong,I love every aspect of cooking regardless of it's work load.Just the simple pleasures of seeing the smiles on the faces of the people you serve but once in a while,it's nice to have that ease.So,here's a recipe I made yesterday for my family.It was delicious so I must share with you.

Beef Stew

You'll need:

1/2 cup All purpose flour
1 tsp Salt
1 tsp  Ground Black pepper (for flour mix)
2 tbsp Ground black pepper (for broth)
4 lbs Beef Chuck-cut into 1 inch cubes -For those of you who don't do red meat,you can substitute with          chicken
Olive oil
2 cups Red cooking wine (you can find the ones with no alcohol)
1 1/2 cups Beef Broth
1 can Pink beans or red beans
2 Onions,sliced (or you could use pearl onions if you like)
1 cup Mushrooms(sliced.Canned if fresh is not available)
1 cup Flat-leaf Parsley (minced)
6 tsp Garlic (minced)
4 Whole Bay Leaves

Special equipment:
Slow cooker/crock pot

(This is what I meant by easy)

Mix flour,salt and pepper in a medium bowl.Make sure beef pieces are pat dry.Dredge beef in flour.Meanwhile,heat  enough olive oil in a skillet or frying pan over medium heat until hot.Shake off excess flour off the beef pieces and sear on all sides until brown.Transfer to your slow cooker.

Add remaining ingredients excluding the minced parsley and stir well to combine.Cover and cook on either LOW for 4 to 6 hours or on HIGH for 2 to 3 hours.About 2 hours in,stir in the parsley.If you find the broth too watery,you can mix a tablespoon of all purpose flour with water and pour in to thicken the broth.For those of you who love spice,you can sprinkle some red chili pepper flakes before serving.

I served mine with some Tuscan bread.You can also serve it with some low carb pasta or some delicious sour dough bread.Those of you who are adventurous and are not worried about carbs,you can certainly serve this in a bread bowl to wow your guests or family.

Let me know what you think and also how it turned out for you.I love and appreciate any feedbacks from all of you.You help me grow!Enjoy.

With love for food and you,