Ultimate Beef Stew
Homemade Beef Stew
We all have that place we remember as being the best place and time we had in our lives. For some, like me, it's back home with my family, sitting around the dining room table having dinner. For others, it's a restaurant, café, picnic table, or some little place we found by chance while traveling.
This beef stew dish hits me in the heart, as it causes me to remember those cool fall days as a child. From time to time my father would make beef stew for the family, and it was awesome. He stumbled around the kitchen, rummaging through the cabinets looking for the ingredients and spices to add to his dishes. His beef stew called for wine, and I can still see him adding a little red wine to his masterpiece.
Here's my beef stew for you to enjoy with your family. I know you'll love it . . . and yes, I use a little red wine, too. Like father, like son.
I made a whole pot of it yesterday, and like clockwork my son and his crew arrived for a late-night chow down. The football team sure can eat.
So, relax—and remember back to that time in your life that makes you warm inside. Smile, grab a glass of wine, and tuck into a warm bowl of this beef stew.
- 3 pounds beef chuck stew meat
- 2 (28-ounce) cans fire-roasted diced tomatoes
- 1 quart beef broth
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 5 stalks celery
- 5 large carrots
- 1 large onion
- 5 red potatoes, cubed
- 1/2 cup frozen peas
- 2 cups mixed mushrooms
- 1 cup flour, for dusting meat
- 1 tablespoon paprika powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon adobo powder
- 1 teaspoon sazon powder
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon salt and pepper, to taste
- Begin by prepping all ingredients for making meal. This takes about 30 to 45 minutes and is best done before you begin cooking. I like to have everything ready, cut up and measured out before I start cooking. It just makes life easier.
- Cut (cube) stew meat into 1-inch cubes (bite-size) and set aside.
- Cut celery and carrots into 1 1/2-inch pieces and set aside.
- Cut onion into 1/2-inch pieces and set aside.
- Dice garlic and set aside.
- Cut (cube) red potatoes into 1-inch pieces and set aside.
- Measure out beef broth, red wine, and fire-roasted diced tomatoes. Measure out herbs and spices and set aside (bay leaf, paprika, garlic powder, sazon and adobo powders, salt, and pepper).
- Let's get cooking: Poor a little olive oil (3 Tbsp) in a large cast-iron pot that can be transferred into the oven later. Add more olive oil as needed. (I use the Lodge Enameled Cast Iron Dutch Oven 4.6 Quart because it's made well and distributes the heat evenly.)
- Take your cubed beef stew meat and lightly salt and pepper it. Then coat the pieces with flour on all sides.
- Heat pot on stovetop with olive oil and begin searing meat on all sides in batches. As the pieces get done, transfer them to a large bowl and do the next batch until all the pieces are done. About 2 to 3 minutes each batch.
- Once all the meat is seared and done, deglaze the pot with 1/2 cup of beef broth and 1/2 red wine, scraping all the little bits on the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon.
- After deglazing, add the chopped vegetables (onion, celery, carrots, mushrooms, and garlic) to the pot and add the thyme and bay leaf. Cover and let simmer for 5 minutes, occasionally stirring with your wooden spoon.
- Once all the vegetables are coated and cooked down a little, return the beef stew meat to the mixture and mix in the fire-roasted diced tomatoes, the rest of the red wine, and beef broth. Mix again.
- Once the mixture is mixed, sprinkle on the adobo, sazon, garlic, and paprika powders. mix well.
- Once everything is in the pot (except the potatoes), add enough water to cover the rest of the mixture (about 1-2 cups water). Bring temperature up to a boil for 1-2 minutes.
- Transfer covered pot to a 375-degree oven for 1 hour. After that time, add the red potatoes, mix, and cover and cook for another 30 minutes.
- After 1 1/2 hours (total) in the oven, carefully remove the pot to the top of the stove and check the meat for tenderness. The meat should break-apart fork tender.
- At this time, check the liquid and add a little flour if needed to thicken the liquid. Remember it's "beef stew" not "beef soup." It should be thick and inviting like a warm fire on a cold winter's day.
- Serve hot with some nice fresh baked, buttered bread and enjoy. You're going to love this stew.