Easy Red Beef Stew

I was headed out to do some holiday shopping recently and decided that I wanted to make a simple crockpot dinner so that I wouldn’t feel pressured to rush home and make something that evening.  I had a nice piece of beef in the fridge and had picked up a package of baby potatoes at the store, so this was a really easy dinner to create.redbeefstew

Ingredients:

  • Beef – I don’t know much about cuts of beef, but I knew enough to get a “chuck roast”.  The one I chose was on sale, so I grabbed one that was on the smaller side so we wouldn’t have much waste.
  • Flour – I tossed some into a plastic bag to coat the beef before putting it into my crockpot.  Don’t honestly know how much… just enough to coat the meat.
  • 1+ onion – I cut this into thick chunks and used one whole vidalia onion and one half a red onion that I had in the fridge
  • 1 packet country gravy
  • 1 packet dry onion soup mix
  • 1 package (or similar amount) of baby potatoes (see photo of what I found at the store… this one included a few cloves of garlic and two sprigs of rosemary)
  • Red wine – the original recipe simply called for water, but that won’t cut it in my house.  WHY USE WATER WHEN YOU CAN USE WINE??
  • Frozen peas – I didn’t measure, but you could use whatever vegetable you like best here.  NOTE: If you’re planning to use carrots, I would allow them to cook with the beef instead of popping them in at the end.

Directions:

  1. Slice onion into chunks and put in the bottom of a large crockpot.
  2. Toss the meat in a plastic bag with some flour and then shake to cover.  Place meat on top of onions to cook.
  3. Open package of potatoes (or chop up large potatoes to fit around roast) and lay them around the meat in the crockpot.
  4. In a separate bowl, open the packets of gravy and onion soup and mix together with red wine.  I did not measure the amount of red wine used – I simply poured the wine and mixed it with the dry ingredients until it looked like enough.  I have a habit of adding too much liquid to my crockpot recipes, so I went a little lighter than I might have otherwise, which ended up working out well.
  5. Pour liquid over the roast.
  6. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-5 hours.
  7. During the last half hour (or 15 minutes before serving), stir the roast a bit and add your frozen peas.  These won’t take long to cook and you don’t want them to disintegrate into the gravy.
  8. Serve with some crusty bread to soak up the gravy… it’s delicious!

This was one of the most simple of meals but such a crowd pleaser.  If your family is picky about onions, feel free to slice them a bit smaller, but I liked the chunks of onion with the bites of meat and potato.  Feel free to experiment with other vegetables or seasonings… it’s your meal for your family, so use what you like!

Enjoy!

Advertisements

Crock Pot Recipe: Beef and Broccoli

This basic recipe popped up on my Facebook feed one day and I knew that I just had to play with it… it seemed a crime (to me) not to see any red wine listed for this dish!  Thankfully, this was a fairly simple dish to use for my family… they love any sort of meat and vegetable dinner.

Crockpot Beef and Broccoli

I gathered my ingredients and went to work assembling everything before I left for work in the morning.  I used a large package of thin cut beef strips that I’d picked up on sale at the local grocery store a few weeks prior and popped the frozen meat into the bottom of my crockpot.  I then mixed 1 cup James River Rad Red Wine (you can use any red wine that you like to drink in this recipe – if you’d drink it in your glass, it’s perfectly fine to use for cooking), 1 packet of G.Washington Rich Brown Seasoning, 1/4 cup soy sauce, 1/4 cup honey, 2 Tablespoons of sesame oil, minced garlic to taste (I use the pre-minced packages, but feel free to add or subtract as you like) and turned on my crockpot to cook on low for 6-8 hours.

When I got home from work that afternoon, the house smelled fabulous.  All the sweet, salty, garlic-y smells combined to make my mouth water as soon as I walked in the house.  I could hardly wait for the guys to get home!  I set about making up some rolls to go with dinner and waited for them to be ready to eat.

There wasn’t much I had to do to complete this meal.  I had purchased a bag of broccoli at the store, so I pierced the bag and popped it into the microwave for 4-5 minutes to steam the broccoli.  As soon as the broccoli was done, I swapped the bag of veggies for a bag of microwaveable brown rice that would cook in 90 seconds and turned the microwave back on.  Now for the sauce…

To complete this meal, I needed to turn the cooking liquid for the beef into a delicious sauce… so I removed it from the crockpot, saving 2 cups of the broth in a small bowl, and added 2 tablespoons of cornstarch to thicken the broth.  I whisked the cornstarch into the broth until there were NO lumps and then stirred it back into the crockpot of beef.  I then added the broccoli and stirred everything together before serving it over the brown rice.

This was simple… it was easy… and it was so VERY tasty.

Enjoy making this recipe your own – it’s worth it!