Here is what I think you should make this weekend:
Oh my god, it’s so good. It’s like everything that’s wonderful about winter, and is really best served in the presence of a Christmas tree. You can make it in a slow-cooker if you want, but I only remembered that I wanted to make stew for dinner around 3PM, so I used a regular stovetop pot, and it was done by six P.M. Vegetables, protein, a little carbs, a lot of deliciousness…it’s all in there in that one pot.
(Did I mention you only have to clean one pot?)
Two more good things about this meal:
1) It’s great for large groups (perfect football-game sustenance), because you can easily double (or triple) the ingredients…and nothing in there is expensive (stew meat is super-cheap because it’s a tough cut that tenderizes from being cooked slowly), so the more, the merrier; and
2) It tastes even better the next day, after the sauce has thickened up even more. So make extra for leftovers; you’ll be glad you did.
Easy, Hearty Beef & Rice Stew
What You Need:
3 tbsp olive oil, divided
1 yellow onion, diced
1 cup baby carrots, cut into halves or thirds (depending on size)
About 2 lbs stew meat (cut into 1″ pieces)
1/2 cup flour
1 tbsp garlic powder
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
2 cups beef broth
1 large (24 oz) can diced tomatoes
4-5 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces
2 cups instant (cook-in-bag, to make your life easier) rice
Salt & pepper
What You Do:
1. In a large pot, heat the olive oil and then cook the onion and carrots a few minutes, until onions are just translucent. Remove the vegetables to a bowl.
2. Toss the stew meat, flour and garlic powder (and a little salt) into a large Ziploc and shake to coat. Add another tablespoon of oil to the pot, heat it up, and then add the meat. Cook it a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until browned on all sides.
3. Return the onion and carrots to the pot, then add the red wine vinegar, beef broth, diced tomatoes and potatoes. Stir to combine, using the spoon to scrape up any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Bring the liquid to a boil, then lower the heat and cover. Cook about three hours, until meat is tender.
4. Just before serving, cook the rice according to package directions and add to the pot. Serve with a little chopped fresh parsley on top, if desired.